Ankle holsters are worn around one’s ankle on the inside edge of their non-dominant leg and are typically worn by police officers, personal preservationists, and other civilians for their backup or secondary firearm, although sometimes for a primary gun among gun owners who are always sitting most of their day.
Ankle holsters are ideal for effective concealment because they’re worn in a place where attention is not typically given to – the leg – although wearing baggy pants may be needed to achieve this purpose. When worn properly, ankle holsters are dependable for a smooth draw, while ensuring one’s firearm won’t be exposed to anyone.
Again, ankle holsters are recommended for those who are sitting or driving for long hours but still want to protect themselves at all times from an attacker. The ankle position of carry would make drawing easier and less painful when compared to doing it from a pocket holster.
These ankle holsters can be used to conceal and help you access your secondary gun easily when your primary weapon renders itself useless due to malfunction or when you can’t access it under a specific circumstance.
Factors to Consider When Choosing a Gun for an Ankle Holster
Before getting your ankle holster, however, there are certain considerations to keep in mind for the best results and most comfortable experience. We’ve outlined them below.
Size and weight of the gun
Effective concealment is one of the primary benefits of an ankle holster because it can keep the gun hidden from anyone’s sight, while still offering you protection during emergencies. It also prevents anyone from snatching your weapon because it’s placed below your body.
What gun you’ll actually use will impact your level of comfort when ankle carrying your gun. As a basic rule of thumb, full size pistols or guns are not for this method, but instead small single stack 9 millimeter autos, small frame revolvers, and small pocket automatics are the most realistic guns you could carry in your ankle.
For ultimate satisfaction, one must consider the gun’s weight and size, though. We recommend using a gun measuring at most six and a half inches (6.5 inches) long in overall length.
It is also more concealable and comfortable to carry with lightweight guns because heavier and larger guns could make it awkward and more difficult for this method. Larger firearms on the ankle could also cause hip and knee issues for a lot of users who ankle wear for a long time.
Type of gun (revolver or semi-automatic)
One of the limitations of an ankle carry method is the gun selection options available for comfortable and concealed carry.
Smaller is better when it comes to the ankle style of carry method because a bulky firearm would be uncomfortable for walking and cause issues like printing and even hip and knee pain later.
That’s why small frame revolvers, sub compacts and micro guns are favored here because they are small enough for concealment and lightweight for long hours of wearing, while also offering adequate firepower for self-defense.
Type of carry (concealed or open)
The ankle style of carrying a firearm can offer flexibility for either an open or concealed carry depending on the size of the gun.
A good gun for ankle holsters would be versatile enough for open carry when using an OWB holster or for concealed carry under either leg of your pants. And depending on the draw hand used, ankle holsters can support wearing your gun on the inside or outside of the leg.
Popular Guns that Fit in an Ankle Holster
What popular gun options are out there for an ankle holster? Check them out in the following.
People who consider owning a gun for small game hunting, personal defense, formal target competition, and even target shooting choose the 38 revolver. The self-defense gun is an intuitive, small, and reliable firearm for ankle carry especially for new shooters who want to learn how to operate a simple gun.
Considered one of the best micro and subcompact pistols in the handguns world, Glock 43 is another consideration for ankle holsters.
Although it is a bit larger than a Glock 42, it still possesses the safety system and trigger of a Glock. It is also one of the best handguns for ankle carry for its lightweight and thin profile and is ideal as a backup gun.
This Lightweight Compact Pistol (LCP) is an excellent option for people looking to conceal carry in their ankle and is also reliable and accurate despite its relatively small size. It’s an excellent compact and lightweight firearm for all day and concealed carry and as a defensive and backup pistol.
This “Baby Glock,” a subcompact semi auto handgun, is particularly designed to be a small gun for civilian and gun owners who want to keep a gun with them all day, particularly in the ankle position, for its small size and lightweight.
Being designed for the civilian market in mind, this Glock can offer ease of concealment and user comfort, while being dependable and accurate for many situations. It’s readily concealable and easy to carry and has enough barrel length.
In the Ruger lineup, LC9s are great ankle holster weapons, although already discontinued. Still, a lot of gun stores sell them across the country.
This affordable pistol is a single stack subcompact that has a striker-fired trigger mechanism that can accommodate 7+1 9mm. It can fit nicely in the right ankle holster.
Factors to Consider When Wearing an Ankle Holster
Wearing an ankle holster can feel different from using it in another body part like the waist. That’s why you need to consider certain things when wearing one. Here they are.
Comfort and fit
If you’re planning to ankle carry your gun, the very first thing to have is a good holster where to put your firearm in and what will retain it in place without unnecessary movements, shakes, and jitters as you move.
Now, you’ll find a lot of comfortable holsters with improved security and adjustability for comfort, and that’s thanks to the latest advancements used in the manufacture of holsters.
Some people may favor wearing a leather holster, and others synthetic Kydex holsters. It all boils down to preference regarding matters of comfort that has to do with the type of material a holster has. You might want to think about hybrid holsters that can be more comfortable, while having fewer printing issues.
The accessibility of the gun when wearing an ankle holster is also important for your safety and protection because this affects the drawing speed.
I must say though that it can take more practice and familiarity to develop your draw from an ankle holster.
You need to work on the draw from different angles until you become familiar with it and consider practicing using an unloaded gun.
Undoubtedly, ankle carry is one of the best concealed carry methods for civilians and law enforcement especially among those carrying a backup weapon.
Gun owners also opt for this concealment style for their primary weapon than other options.
An ankle holster is good for concealment and comfort as well because it doesn’t crowd one’s waistline with a heavy/bulky firearm, while allowing the wearer to move freely.
For ultimate concealment, wear the right pants, which shouldn’t be tight, to avoid printing issues and awkward movements, like when walking.
Nevertheless, you must consider several critical factors when choosing a gun for an ankle holster.
This includes the size and weight of the gun. Small pocket automatics, small frame revolvers, and single stack 9mm autos are favored here.
The gun should also be no more than 6.5 inches overall barrel length and weighs light enough for all-day carry.
Smaller is better when it comes to ankle carry, and again, subcompacts and micro guns are ideal options for it.
Your type of carry, open or concealed, should also be considered when choosing a gun for an ankle holster. It must be small enough to conceal carry to minimize printing and discomfort of wearing for a long time.
You must also think about the draw hand you’re using, but most ankle holsters, depending on the model, can support holding your firearm either on the inside or outside of the non-dominant leg.