You might have a bad holster if it causing you to violate basic safety. Typically we don’t see the issue until we see the holsters inside the waistband.
In all the Concealed Carry classes we have taught since 2015, total of 34, a major safety issue we see is a collapsing holsters. The pressure of the belt against the body can collapse or compress the mouth to the holster, restricting it’s access. When access to the holster is compromised we see the opportunity for safety violations to occur. Honestly, I didn’t believe there would be enough material to create a blog, but after review there is plenty. Holster material is not always the culprit, positioning and type have a hand in this issue.
As I mentioned earlier, the holster material is the biggest culprit. Leather holsters, even quality built leather holsters will collapse or compress more easily than Kydex. There are design features to aide in re-holstering such as retaining bands. The problem is as a leather holster ages it typically softens allowing the external forces to exaggerate the issue. If your holster started out with some difficulty, you can expect it to get worse, not necessarily better. When the mouth is restricted, the muzzle has a harder time fitting into the space. The option most taken to combat the issue is bringing the weak hand across the body to manually hold or even attempt to spread open the mouth. I have yet to see this completed without the muzzle covering their weak hand.
Making it worse
Some will counter it is only for a short bit or it doesn’t count. We often are quick to marginalize what we don’t like in order to better support our own narrative. Just look at the average liberal talking points and you can see the strategy pretty easily. The safety rules exist in a multifaceted manner; where if one should fail the others should prevent the accident or worse case mitigate the damage. This becomes an issue because the next problem you face is when the restricted or collapsed mouth forces the wearer to point the muzzle into their hip in order to facility entry into the holster. I see this often enough we put it out in our safety brief during classes. In an attempt to not cover their weak hand they create this alternative technique; which is far worse.
Safety is free
Positioning can create problems when combined with certain body types. When the shoulder to hip ratio creates a more rotund waistline muzzle discipline becomes more challenging. Combine a restrictive or collapsing holster and the recipe for disaster is primed. All I can do is brief the wearer of the risks and ensure a higher level of awareness and safety during re-holstering. If possible, I will replace the suboptimal holster with an improved holster to mitigate risk. There are holsters designed with high sweat guards for comfort. Combine this feature with a more pliable material and not only do you have a re-holstering challenge, but a trigger hazard as well. This high sweat guards with age or body type can press outward thereby restricting access to the holster’s mouth. While dubbed a comfort feature, I view them more as a hazard and should be avoided
Someone new to concealed carry can easily be swayed or confused on holsters. Hopefully, safety will be a higher priority moving forward.