Holster Ride & Height: What You Need To Know Explained

Holster Ride low ride vs mid ride vs high ride for beginners

Let’s talk about “holster ride.”

While it won’t make or break your carrying experience…

Knowing the difference between low, medium, and high holster ride levels might take your concealed carry skills to the next level.

Today, I’ll go over the different holster ride heights, and their importance for both open and concealed carry.

Ready? Let’s get started…

What is Holster Ride?

Holster ride refers to the position of your gun in relation to your belt line when using a belt-mounted holster. In other words – holster ride is the height of your holster. 

The Importance Of Holster Ride Height

  • Comfort: A poorly adjusted holster can cause discomfort during daily activities or long periods of wear. 
  • Accessibility: Your ability to quickly draw your firearm depends on its position relative to your hand. An awkwardly placed gun could slow down reaction time in critical situations.
  • Concealment: If concealing your weapon is important (and let’s face it, most people prefer not advertising they’re packing heat), then finding the perfect balance between easy access and discreet placement to avoid printing becomes crucial. Concealed carry holster positioning is an art form in itself.
  • Stability: Last but not least, a well-adjusted holster ride height will ensure your gun stays put during movement. No one wants their firearm flopping around like a fish out of water.

In short, finding the right holster ride height for you will elevate your concealed carry experience, and comfort.

Key Takeaway: 


Holster ride height is an important consideration for both comfort and accessibility when carrying a firearm. It refers to the position of your gun in relation to your belt line. Finding the right balance between easy access and discreet placement can make all the difference in your carrying experience.

Types Of Holster Rides

Low Holster Ride

A low-ride holster sits lower on your belt, with the grip closer to your thigh than your waistline. This position offers some serious benefits:

  • Concealment: A lower profile means less chance of printing (when people can see the outline of your gun through clothing).
  • Comfort: The weight distribution feels more natural for many users, especially when sitting or bending over.

The downside? Low-ride holsters might slow down draw speed because they require a longer reach and arm extension. But hey, practice makes perfect.

Mid Holster Ride

The Goldilocks zone for many carriers – not too high, not too low – mid-ride holsters sit right at or slightly below waist level. Some advantages include:

  • Better accessibility: Your firearm is easier to reach compared to low-ride setups.
  • Versatility: Mid-rides work well with both open and concealed carry situations.

Sure, they may be a bit more prone to printing than low-ride holsters, but with the right clothing and positioning, you’ll be good to go. For those seeking a combination of concealment and access, mid-ride holsters are an ideal selection.

High Holster Ride

Last but not least: hi-ride holsters. These bad boys sit higher on your belt, keeping the grip close to your waistline. Some perks of this setup:

  • Fast draw speed: With less distance between your hand and gun, drawing is quicker than ever.
  • Easier reholstering: The high position makes it simpler to put your firearm back in its place after use.

The trade-off? Hi-rides can feel less comfortable due to weight distribution issues (especially when sitting) and may print more easily than other options. But if speedy access is what you’re after – look no further.

In summary: low-ride offers better concealment and comfort; mid-ride provides versatility; hi-ride prioritizes fast draw speeds. Choose wisely based on what matters most to you. And remember – practice makes perfect regardless of which ride height you pick.

Key Takeaway: 


Holster ride height is an important factor to consider when choosing a holster for concealed carry. There are three main types of holster rides: low-ride, mid-ride, and hi-ride, each with their own pros and cons. It’s important to choose the right one based on your priorities for concealment, accessibility, or fast draw speed.

How to Adjust Holster Ride Height

Finding Your Ideal Ride Height

First things first: let’s find your ideal ride height. This will depend on factors such as body type, clothing preferences, and personal comfort levels. Here are some steps to help you figure it out:

  1. Wear your typical daily attire: Put on the clothes you usually wear when carrying concealed.
  2. Trial and error: Try different holster positions around your waistband or belt until you find one that feels comfortable and secure.
  3. Mirror check: Stand in front of a mirror to see how well the firearm is concealed at each position.
  4. Drawing practice: Practice drawing from various positions to ensure easy access without compromising concealment or safety.

The Adjustment Process

You’ve found your sweet spot – now what? It’s time for adjustments. Most holsters have adjustable features that allow users to modify their ride heights easily. Let me walk you through some common methods:

Screw-Based Adjustments

In many cases, holsters come equipped with screws that can be loosened or tightened for adjustment purposes (source). Follow these simple steps for screw-based adjustments:

  1. Loosen the screws holding your holster’s belt clips or loops in place.
  2. Move the clips or loops up or down to adjust ride height. Remember, moving them up will lower your holster and vice versa.
  3. Tighten the screws once you’ve found a comfortable position that provides optimal concealment and accessibility.

Clip-Based Adjustments

If your holster uses clip-based adjustments, it’s even easier. Simply slide the clip along its designated track until you reach your desired ride height (source). Then, lock it into place by pressing firmly on both sides of the clip. Voila.

A Word of Caution: Safety First.

I cannot stress this enough: always practice safe gun handling when adjusting your holster ride height. Make sure to:

  • Unload: Remove any ammunition from both firearm and magazine before making adjustments.
  • Muzzle discipline: Keep muzzle pointed in a safe direction at all times during adjustment process – no finger on trigger either.

Remember, safety first – we want our concealed carry experience to be smooth sailing without any accidental mishaps.

Tinkering with the position of your holster is essential for gun safety and ease, so take some time to explore different heights until you find a spot that suits you. Now let’s look at recommended holster ride heights for beginners who are just getting started with concealed carry.

Key Takeaway: 


Adjusting your holster ride height is important for comfortable and secure concealed carry. To find your ideal ride height, wear typical daily attire, try different positions, check in a mirror and practice drawing from various positions. Holsters can be adjusted through screw-based or clip-based methods but always prioritize safety first by unloading the firearm and keeping the muzzle pointed in a safe direction during adjustments.

4. Recommended Holster Ride Height For Beginners

The general consensus is that mid-ride holsters are an excellent starting point for beginners. Why?

  • Comfort: Mid-ride holsters sit just below your waistline, making them comfortable enough for everyday wear without causing any significant discomfort.
  • Concealment: A mid-ride position keeps your firearm well-hidden under most clothing types while still allowing easy access when needed (source). Say goodbye to awkward printing situations.
  • Faster draw speed: Your hand naturally rests near this area when standing or walking; hence drawing from a mid-ride holster can be quicker than other positions.

The bottom line is that there’s no one-size-fits-all answer here; what works best for someone else might not work well for you. So give each option a fair shake before settling down with “the one.”

Key Takeaway: 


Mid-ride holsters are recommended for beginners, as they strike a balance between comfort, concealment, and faster draw speed. However, low-ride holsters provide better concealment while hi-ride holsters prioritize quick-draw capabilities at the expense of some concealment.

5. Troubleshooting Common Issues with Holster Ride

A. Printing

No, I’m not talking about making copies at the office – “printing” refers to when the outline of your gun is visible through your clothing while carrying concealed. This is a big no-no for obvious reasons.

  • Adjust ride height: Try raising or lowering the ride height of your holster until it’s in a position where it doesn’t print as much.
  • Dress around the gun: Consider wearing looser-fitting clothes or patterns that can help break up any outlines caused by printing.
  • Tweak cant angle: Adjusting the cant angle of your holster may also help reduce printing by changing how it sits against your body.

B. Discomfort

If wearing a holstered firearm feels like cuddling with an angry porcupine, then something needs fixing.

  • Finding sweet spot: Experiment with different positions along your waistline until you find one that provides maximum comfort without sacrificing accessibility.
  • Adjust ride height: Just like with printing, adjusting your holster’s ride height can make a world of difference in terms of comfort.
  • Add padding or cushioning: If all else fails, consider adding some padding or cushioning between your body and the holster to alleviate any discomfort. There are products available specifically for this purpose, such as the Wedge DCC Clips.

C. Stability Issues

If your handgun feels unsteady when you shift, there may be issues of steadiness to attend to.

  • Tighten belt loops/attachments: Make sure that your holster is securely fastened to your belt by tightening any loops or attachments.
  • Better quality belt: Invest in a high-quality gun belt designed for carrying firearms. A sturdy foundation will help keep everything stable and secure.
  • Holster retention adjustment: Check if there’s an option to adjust retention on your specific model – tighter retention might be needed if you feel like things are too wobbly.

D. Difficult Draw

Your draw should be smooth and efficient – not an epic battle against gravity. Here are some tips to improve your draw:

  • Practice, practice, practice: The more you train with your holster and firearm, the better you’ll become at drawing smoothly. Dry-fire drills are an excellent way to build muscle memory.
  • Ride height adjustment: Adjusting ride height can also affect how easily you can access your gun during a draw – experiment until it feels just right.
Key Takeaway: 


This section provides troubleshooting tips for common issues with holster ride, including printing, discomfort, stability issues, and difficult draw. Suggestions include adjusting ride height and cant angle, dressing around the gun to break up outlines caused by printing, investing in a high-quality gun belt for stability, and practicing your draw through dry-fire drills.


You should now have an idea of what a holster ride is, and the different options available to you.

You know the differences between low ride, mid ride, and high ride. 

You know how to adjust your holster’s ride, and how to troubleshoot any issues you might have. 

Not bad for 10 minutes of reading, eh? 

Hope this guide was helpful, and you had as much fun reading it as I had writing it.

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