Now, you may think that holster cant is a simple term that is easy to understand. If so, that’s great! But for beginners, cant can be confusing if it isn’t properly defined. Positive, negative, neutral, FBI… what does all this mean? Don’t worry, after reading this post you will be a pro!
What is holster cant?
First, let’s go over some of the more common terms used in relation to holster cant. “Cant” just means the angle in which your gun is holstered. There are three options and variations of each.
- Neutral Cant: The holster is pointing straight up and down, there is no angle. The top of the holster is directly above the bottom of the holster.
- Positive/Forward Cant: The holster is angled so the top of the holster is more forward than the center. The grip is more forward than the barrel in relation to the holster.
- Negative/Reverse Cant: The holster is angled so the top of the holster is more rearward than the center. The grip is more rearward than the barrel of the holster in relation to the holster.
Many holsters have clips or mounting systems that allow you to adjust the angle of your holster.
What cant is best for my carry position?
Each cant type is useful for different positions. You can always adjust to make yourself more comfortable but there are some generally accepted guidelines.
- Neutral Cant: This cant is great for carrying on the side of your hip and on your strong side. Drawing from this position is a natural movement and is comfortable.
- Positive Cant: This is best used on your strong side, usually in the 4 o’clock or kidney postion.
- Negative Cant: This position makes gripping your gun easier when carrying cross-draw or appendix. The grip will be shifted toward your hand for easier drawing.
Will anything else affect how I cant my holster?
Finding the right cant for your holster will depend on four things. Where the holster is positioned, ability to grip, ability to conceal, and comfort.
- Position: As mentioned above, there are some cants that are just better for each carry position.
- Grip: The most important consideration when choosing your cant will be your ability to get a good grip on your gun. You have to be able to draw your gun quickly and effectively so you don’t waste precious seconds when you need to be ready to use your gun.
- Concealment: Another very important factor is your ability to conceal your gun! The holster cant can help with this! The slight tilt will help the gun sit closer to your body and prevent printing.
- Comfort: If you can grip and conceal your gun, the next issue you need to think about is comfort! This will be more related to the degree of the cant more than anything. You know that you want to carry in the kidney position and a positive cant works best. Your comfort level will determine how extreme your angle will be. While a 10 degree cant works for some, a 20 or 30 degree cant may work better for others.
Keep a few things in mind when thinking about holster cant. First, cant is just a term that means the angle in which you carry your holstered gun. Secondly, you want to find the right cant/position combo. Then, think about your ability to grip and conceal your gun. Finally, you need to find the most comfortable and accessible way for you to carry your gun.
It is always important to practice drawing from your holster, unless you are at the range shooting live fire, this practice should be done with an unloaded gun. Practice is also required if you change the cant of your holster. The angle of your hand as you grasp the grip of the gun changes, so it is very important that you make sure that you and your hand are comfortable drawing from an any and all cant angles. The angle with which you carry your gun also can impact your cover clothing. It’s important that the angle of your holstered gun doesn increase the likelyhood of that clothing snagging during your draw from concealment.