How to Wear a Paddle Holster (2023 UPDATED) Full Resource

How To Wear A Paddle Holster
Alfred Mendoza

Because of their convenience, paddle holsters are a popular choice among handgun owners. However, to use a paddle holster appropriately, you must learn to make proper adjustments and know the advantages and disadvantages of using them. 

Our team came up with these easy steps you could follow in wearing a paddle holster.

1. Choose A Paddle Holster

In choosing a good-quality holster, you must recognize that handguns come in various sizes. There are many different sizes of hands, too. Thus, finding a handgun that would fit perfectly in your paddle holster is important.

If you make poor decisions, they will turn you down over time. As a result, you’ll draw attention to yourself by fidgeting, rearranging, or feeling uncomfortable. Alien gear holsters are one the best examples of a good-quality paddle holster. 

2. Get Your Weapon & Prepare Your Paddle Holster

Once you’re done deciding among the many paddle holster options that you’re going to use, prepare it as well as your weapon.

If you’re planning to carry concealed weapons, a smaller subcompact type handgun or any other handgun of your choice will suffice. If you wish to use a pistol with a long barrel, you’ll need to put your paddle higher on your waist.

3. Check Safety Before Proceeding

Working with weapons necessitates a high level of caution.

Check to see if your pistol is safe to use before going further. You can use a finger check, or if you’re working with a loaded pistol, make sure the gun isn’t charged, and safety is on.

Always keep in mind that safety comes first.

Check The Safety Before Proceeding

4. Wear Sturdy Belt & Pants

Other holsters rely on friction to keep their contents secure. You can use one without the band by fastening it to your concealed carry pants’ waistline.

On the other hand, a belt prevents your pants from sagging due to the paddle’s weight and the gun. 

5. Set-up The Holster 

While some of the designs are completely functional holsters, others have a modular design that allows switching. If you need to replace the belt attachment and install the paddle in your current holster, see the user manual and the appropriate tools for your guidance.

6. Adjust The Cant & Retention Of The Holster

After setting up your paddle holster, you have to adjust the cant and learn the swapping of the belt slide and paddle attachment and the paddle holster retention. 

It’s important to make these adjustments, as cants prevent your gun from being drawn and retention, on the other hand, is the process of protecting your weapon inside the holster. [1]

Adjust The Cant & Retention Of The Holster

7. Set The Weapon Aside

To ensure a snug fit, place your gun inside the holster. Place your weapon aside once you’re confident that it is seated properly. 

8. Wear Loose Jacket or Shirt To Conceal The Holster

Paddle holsters can easily be concealed if you dress appropriately for concealed carry. When using a paddle holster, loose-fitting shirts, coats, and jackets can provide effective concealment. 

Some people like to sit since it is more comfortable for them. You won’t have to worry about the firearm poking into your leg as it does with loop holsters because you may modify where the holster is situated on your waistline.

What You Need to Know

What You Need to Know

1. Proper Carry Angle

Your favorite paddle holsters are great for regular concealed carry as well as tactical applications. Compared to IWB holsters, most paddle holsters offer a superior grip on the handgun and a faster draw speed.

They have a cant adjustment, too. It’s slightly angled outwards to provide you with a better grip. It would be best to bring your weapon 15 degrees forward at the FBI cant to make it more effective.

It would help if you first pulled the handgun up and swung your arm towards the target when carrying the holster vertically downwards. 

2. Use a Belt 

Paddles rely on friction to keep their contents secure. You can use one without the band by fastening it to your concealed carry pants’ waistline, like the Alien Gear Cloak Mod Paddle Holster.  

A gun belt, on the other hand, will keep your holster from pulling out. When you use upward power to draw the weapon, the paddle will snag on the raised contour of the band.

3. Use Proper Clothing

Paddle holsters have drawbacks when it comes to concealed carry. For starters, paddle holsters protrude deeper from your body than belt slide holsters. If you don’t wear appropriate clothing, the entire world will know you’re armed. 

The Serpa Sportster holster pros can be used for concealed carry and shooting range days. Its ergonomic shape allows users to put it up close to the body and conceal it under a windbreaker, sweatshirt, or jacket.

Use Proper Clothing

4. Paddle Holster Retention 

Like other paddle holster models, these holsters have two forms of adjustable retention: passive and active retention.


Passive retention uses friction between the holster and the firearm to secure the gun inside the holster. The retention of some holster types, such as leather holsters, is largely dependent on the holster’s size, inner surface, and ability to be broken in.

However, in some cases, passive retention can be changed using the holster’s retention screws. Passive retention holsters are usually open-ended. Although, most holsters use both passive and active retention.


Active retention systems use a mechanical technique to hold your firearm inside the holster, such as a retaining strap that covers the hammer. This retaining strap is called a “thumb break.” Thumb straps and other active retention devices are often utilized, but it depends on the holster model.

The gun will not fall out of the holster under any circumstances if active retention is used. We suggest choosing active retention when you’re doing vigorous activities.

5. Practice With Your Holster 

Always bear in mind that practice makes perfect. To guarantee that you’re doing it effectively, you must train with it frequently. Practice with your holster as much as possible so that you can do it appropriately when you need it.

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Why You Should Use Paddle Holsters

Why You Should Use Paddle Holsters

Easy to Adjust

The nicest part about paddles is that you can customize the draw angle to suit your needs. It is a very safe device because of its adjustable retention and auto-lock feature. 

All you have to do to change the carry position is slide it to the desired position. When you sit, run, or do any other action, you can adjust your position accordingly.

Concealment with Comfort

Some holsters, such as leather holsters, may require some break-in time. Particularly those of better quality are custom-made for your specific firearm. Some people, however, will not be; in that case, a model with a thumb break could be a good investment.

They may be removed and changed for their carry position when needed. These features make them quite convenient to use. They’re also easy to conceal when worn with the right clothes, making them ideal for everyday concealed carry.

Quick Draw

The nicest part about this paddle holster is that you can adjust the draw angle to your personal preference. Compared to other holsters, paddle holsters provide faster draw time. 

Outside, the waistband holsters allow you to aim at your target without wasting valuable seconds, provide a firm grip on your weapon, and are easy to reach.

Easy to Remove

A paddle holster is quite simple to remove. Its most significant benefit is that it does not require the user to undo their pants to remove the holster. Since a piece of these is worn within the waistband, users can easily remove and replace them.

Why You Shouldn’t

Why You Shouldn’t

Limited Concealment

Although the design of paddle holsters makes it easier for users to put on and remove them than belt loop holsters, it does not keep the holster tight against the body. Also, they come in big sizes, that’s why concealing them is a bit difficult.

To hide it, you must always dress in an untucked loose shirt or a covering garment such as a coat or jacket. 

Large Size

Because holsters are a touch further out from the body, concealment may be a little more challenging. They are bigger, which could make concealing and carrying more difficult. They may also be uncomfortable for exceedingly thin persons. 

Not Very Secure

If enough force is applied, a paddle holster can be pulled from you. It may come out if it is not worn properly or someone tries to take your handgun. Unlike IWB and loop holsters, this makes it vulnerable to snatching. 

They also lack stability. Friction is what makes the paddle secure and keeps the contents in their place. This method of placement is less secure than using a belt holster as it can cause the holster to shift around the waist.

Also Read: How Do You Buy a Gun Online?


A paddle holster is an OWB (outside the waistband) holster, which means it is worn outside the pants.

Yes, you can still wear a holster without using your belt. But other holster styles require a band to function because it is convenient to use paddle holsters outside the waistband holster style without depending on the belt.

Learning to Wear a Paddle Holster

In conclusion, paddle holsters aren’t perfect for everyday carry. They come with advantages and disadvantages, but they’re excellent for tactical and range use situations. They can be concealed easily and comfortable to use. They’re also offering a quick draw, and they’re easy to adjust. 

Just choose the best paddle holster, get your weapon and check its safety before setting up the holster. Then adjust its cant and retention, wear something loose to conceal it, and you’re good to go.



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