Suit Up for Battle

This is a discussion on Suit Up for Battle within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; The key defining word for concealed carry is right in its name: concealed. You do not want to raise any red flags among the people ...

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Thread: Suit Up for Battle

  1. #1
    Member Array Gsolutions's Avatar
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    Suit Up for Battle

    The key defining word for concealed carry is right in its name: concealed. You do not want to raise any red flags among the people around you that you carry a weapon, but you want to have your pistol readily accessible in case you have to defend yourself. Simple enough? NOT!

    There are quite a few more things to this than just hiding the weapon. Look at force-on-force classes and you will note that many scenarios end up in much closer distances than many traditional schools will train you for. While you sure want to keep a potential bad guy at a healthy distance from you, you may not be able to accomplish this out on the street. You may be distracted strapping your kids into their carseats and realize too late that while you were struggling with the puzzle-type belt buckle someone walked up to within ten feet of you.


    What this close distance means is that you may not be able to bring a weapon into the fight before your opponent can close the distance. You will probably need some sort of combatives to deflect an opponent before you can access and orient your gun. Here is where your clothing has a large part in your whole approach to defensive readiness. Can you fight efficiently in the clothes you are wearing? Can you throw a decisive kneestrike into your opponents ribcage or do your pants choke you out halfway through the motion? Does your shirt allow for full range of motion or does it limit your movement? Does it conceal the weapon well, does the cut of the fabric allow for easy access or does it tend to snag on your gear?

    I had one shirt that allowed for great concealment and easy access to the pistol. But when I practiced my draw, swept the garment aside and cleared Kydex, I heard something clattering to the ground behind me. The seam of the shirt had snagged on the pocket clip of my flashlight and my clearing sweep had launched it out of my pocket. Needless to say that this shirt is no longer in my closet.

    Bottom line is to check if your clothes are compatible with concealed carry and combatives! I’m blessed with a work environment where I can wear Jeans or Cargo pants with untucked polo shirts. The pants are wide enough to hold a Glock 19 in an IWB holster and the pocket layout allows for all the other stuff that goes along for the ride to accompany the pistol. They also allow for a full range of movement. It does not matter if I have to kneel or squat down to lower my profile or if I need to throw a kick to the midsection – that’s what I was looking for when I bought these pants.


    The polo shirts also run double-duty: they hide the pistol and have a nice pen-pocket on the left sleeve where my tactical pen lives. If I wear regular shirts, the pen goes in the chest pocket where it is even a bit easier to access. Again, the shirts are wide, comfy and allow a full range of motion.

    Our six-year old put my clothing to the test without knowing it one day, when I came home and stepped right into a sparring match between him and his older brother. He turned to me with a wide grin and the announcement “Daddy, watch this!” – followed by a barrage of kicks and punches for me to block. I squatted down a bit to get closer to his eye-level and crablegged around him, blocking the incomings and making sure that he remembers to protect his head.

    It was a great exercise for my legs and a perfect test for the clothes I was wearing. I could do what I needed to do without any problems. At the same time neither my son nor anyone else in the room realized that my Glock 19 was safely tucked into its holster underneath my shirt.

    Now – jeans and polo shirts will not work for everyone. There are environments that require a more elevated dress-code. This does not mean that you are out of luck. If you have to wear slacks, shirt and tie you can still select them wide enough so that you can move comfortably. The same goes for sport coats – pick one that does not limit your shoulder movement.

    If you do not have to wear a jacket, but want to conceal a compact size pistol, you may have to go to a purpose-designed shirt. What I mean with this is a shirt where the buttons are fake and the shirts actually closed with hidden snaps – which allow access to a belly band or holster shirt underneath.

    One other point that I would pay a lot of attention to are shoes. Select footwear that provides a good amount of traction. Yes, they will have a rubber outsole instead of fancy stylish leather, but they will allow you to explode off the X when you have to. We’ve seen in many force-on-force courses how crucial aggressive and decisive movement is.
    In a recent knife course, a female student prevailed empty-handed against and opponent that outweighed her by 60 lbs. She was able to do this because she could outmaneuver his attack. If you spin your wheels because those slick leather soles slip on damp concrete you will have a problem to tip the scale in your favor.

    The same goes for the fit of the shoe – make sure that it stays on your foot. This may sound trivial, but take a look at some shoes out there – there is stylish footwear that even when tied, is not anchored to your foot.

    To sum things up – your approach to concealed carry should include consideration for the fight in your choice of clothing.
    RemMod597, TSiWRX and wmhawth like this.
    Uli Gebhard
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    Array Bark'n's Avatar
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    Nice post.

    Some good information in there. I appreciate it.
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    "The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."

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    Distinguished Member Array TSiWRX's Avatar
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    Awesome post!!!!! Only 21 posts on the Forum, and this one sure is a winner!!!!

    And it looks like your boys are real Cato Fong's, too. Yeah, my daughter is getting there as well. It's great to come home to the unexpected.

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    Distinguished Member Array claude clay's Avatar
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    as you have said it here quite well, carrying is a life style. its more than just adding objects to your body as you leave the house....objects we well assume you are well practiced in the use of.
    but are you as well practiced in the presentation of them? many young people do not want to change their style of dress but want to carry a gun and accessories. well, there is a middle ground where it is a 'new you' with the new accessories. said another way--in 10 or so years your body and dress style will change....you are just starting now; a little earlier.
    as a for instance:
    flip-flops, any shoe without a heel strap are a danger when driving and if you have to move fast, perhaps even a greater danger.
    many other items of dress ( scarves, long hair) should be examined in light of how they may be used--or used against you.

    true CC along with the skill of SA and the ability to present toward danger but for a glimpse which yields action, is a combination of skills that may take years to achieve.
    wmhawth likes this.
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    Every week that passes has me reconsidering one piece of clothing or another, as I try to wear shirts that once fit decently, but no longer work with my new mindset. One thing that hurts to think about giving up are flip flop sandals. I live in them constantly when the weather is hot, but they are so far from being capable footwear in a fight, it's downright laughable.

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    Distinguished Member Array Elk Hunter's Avatar
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    Well said, I know I have changed my look for a casual outing, but I still have to wear dress pants and shirts at work and other things. The CrossBreed Supertuck works great with a shirt tucked in, just takes a slight amount of time to jerk the shirt up out of the way. Always good to practice your draw dressed in the same manner you would be on a normal day.

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    Very nice post. Thanks for the re-fresher.
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    Granted, it was a cowboy mounted shooting practice but after chatting with someone's friend who came out to watch (wearing a photog's vest), after awhile (of not discussing guns) he turned around and showed me his carry at 4 o'clock. I said, 'yeah, I figured since you were wearing the vest.' He looked a bit non-plussed.
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    VIP Member Array paaiyan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snider View Post
    One thing that hurts to think about giving up are flip flop sandals. I live in them constantly when the weather is hot, but they are so far from being capable footwear in a fight, it's downright laughable.
    Your best bet is to get rid of them ASAP should worse come to worst. You can deal with cuts or abrasions on your feet later, but the moment you sense danger you should be adjusting to where you can rid yourself of them immediately.
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    Member Array Snider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paaiyan View Post
    Your best bet is to get rid of them ASAP should worse come to worst. You can deal with cuts or abrasions on your feet later, but the moment you sense danger you should be adjusting to where you can rid yourself of them immediately.
    Agreed 100%. If things go pear shaped, I'll be stepping out of them and going barefoot for sure.

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    VIP Member Array JDE101's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snider View Post
    Agreed 100%. If things go pear shaped, I'll be stepping out of them and going barefoot for sure.
    Couldn't help but get the mental image of Billy Jack from the movies back in the late 60s-70s?? Dude always slipped out of his cowboy boots when he was about to go Kung-fu on a group of bad guys. Funny as "heck". At least you can get out of flip-flops rapidly!
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    Member Array Snider's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JDE101 View Post
    Couldn't help but get the mental image of Billy Jack from the movies back in the late 60s-70s?? Dude always slipped out of his cowboy boots when he was about to go Kung-fu on a group of bad guys. Funny as "heck". At least you can get out of flip-flops rapidly!
    Hehe, that is from before my time, but sounds like a good time.

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    Important point to ponder...thanks for the post!
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    Member Array Gsolutions's Avatar
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    Thank you all for your kind words and your feedback.

    What shoes are concerned, I'm kind of infamous among the family to wear boots whenever I can get away with it - which is most of the time.

    Favorite at work are steel-toe boots - even being mainly in engineering, I still spend a lot of time out on the shop floor, which provides the perfect exc.... errr reason.
    Uli Gebhard
    Suarez International Staff Instructor California
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    www.gebhardsolutions.com

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