How to Put on a Shoulder Holster


Shoulder holsters are one of the best firearm-carrying accessories any gun owner can have. Not only does it ensure optimum comfort by distributing your handgun’s weight evenly across the shoulders. It also allows for carrying a magazine or two. You can enjoy these benefits only if you know how to put on a shoulder holster correctly.

Table of Contents

How to Put on a Shoulder Holster

Step 1. Put on the Holster Harness Over Your Shoulders

Remove your handgun from the shoulder holster and slip one arm through an arm loop. Slide one harness strap over your shoulder. Insert your other arm through the other loop as if you are putting on your backpack. Check the position of the gun and clip holsters. The holsters should be below the arms.

You can also wear the holster harness by partially sliding both arms into their respective loops. You can then lift the straps’ cross-section and move it over your head. Slide both arms simultaneously until the straps rest over your shoulders and back.

Step 2. Ensure the Correct Placement of the Shoulder Straps

Ensure the correct positioning of the back straps. They should cross right over your spine between your shoulders. This position ensures uniform weight distribution and holster balance.

The straps should lie flat against your upper back and shoulders without any twisted section. For holster harnesses with shoulder pads, it would be best to position the cushion squarely over the shoulder near the neck. This placement helps improve uniform weight distribution and comfort.

Step 3. Adjust the Holster Harness Straps to Ensure the Correct Fit

Like wearing your backpack, you will also want the holster harness to stay close to the body. Holster harnesses come with adjustable straps, allowing you to tighten or loosen them to ensure the correct fit.

Look at yourself in a mirror to check the placement of the holster harness. Perform a series of movements, including raising your arms and moving them sideways and towards your front and back. Watch how the harness moves while noting your comfort level.

If the harness moves a lot with every movement you make, it can be a little bit loose. If you have limited movement, the harness is too tight. Make the necessary adjustments and watch the harness again while performing different movements.

It may take a while before you can find the sweet spot between comfort and sufficient holster harness movement.

Step 4. Position the Holster

Shoulder holsters come in different holster placements. It would be best to get a shoulder holster with movable or adjustable holsters. Ideally, you should position the holster under the armpit and slightly in front of your non-dominant arm. The magazine holster should also be under the armpit on the opposite side of the holster harness.

If your shoulder holster does not allow for adjustment of the holster placement, you will have to acclimatize yourself with its position.

Some products have detachable holsters. It is always best to position the handgun holster on your non-dominant side. For example, if you are more proficient with your right hand, you should position the holster in your left, under your armpit. This position allows your dominant hand to draw your weapon with ease.

Step 5. Adjust the Holster’s Angle

Most gun owners prefer to position their holsters at a 60-degree angle relative to the ground. This angle puts the handgun’s butt readily accessible during drawing.

Some people like to place their holsters parallel to the ground. This position is suitable for those who have the holster higher up their body. It is also a more comfortable placement than having the holster at an angle.

You may want to practice drawing and re-holstering your weapon to determine which position works best. Try to determine which angle gives you the quickest draw while maintaining comfort.

Step 6. Secure Your Handgun and Magazine (If Any) Into the Holsters

Grab your pistol and slide it into its holster. If your holster comes with a latch, you can also secure it to ensure your weapon’s integrity. You can do the same with your magazine if your harness comes with a clip holster.


The steps about how to put on a shoulder holster are as straightforward as learning how to put on a backpack for the first time. The key here is to find the perfect balance over your shoulders. It also helps to ensure the correct fit of the harness and the positioning of the holster.

Rate this post

Like this article?

Share on facebook
Share on Facebook
Share on twitter
Share on Twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on Linkdin
Share on pinterest
Share on Pinterest

Leave a comment

Subscribe To Know First

Get notified about new articles