Gun Holster Glossary

Here are some commonly used terms in the gun holster industry that may help you as you are researching gun holsters:

Kydex - Thermoplastic material used for a number of applications, including holsters, mag carriers, and flashlight carriers

Leather - Material produced from animal hide that is used for a number of various applications, including holsters, mag carriers, and flashlight carriers

Shooting Hand - Refers to the hand that you actually shoot with.

Outside the Waistband or OWB - Means that the holster is worn on the outside of the waistband in some fashion versus inside the waistband.

Inside the Waistband or IWB - Means that the holster is worn inside the waistband in some fashion.

Tactical Holster - Refers to a holster that worn on the thigh of the shooting hand side.

Ankle Holster - A holster specifically designed to worn on the ankle.

Shoulder holster - A holster that incorporates a harness worn over the shoulder or shoulders. The holster portion of this rig usually rides under the armpit of the wearer's weak side.

Crossdraw - A term used to describe a holster that rides on your weak side, but the drawing motion is performed across the body with the shooting hand. These holsters can be either OWB or IWB.

Small of the Back or SOB - Refers to a holster that carried in the small of the back near your spine. These holsters can be either OWB or IWB.

Strongside - A term used to describe the shooting hand side of the body. For example, if you shoot with your right hand, then the right side of your body (in particular your right side waist) would be considered your strongside.

Weakside - A term used to describe the non-shooting hand side of your body. For example, if you shoot with your right hand, then the left side of your body would be considered your weakside.

Offside - Another term used to describe your weakside hand (see Weakside above).

Cant - Refers to the angle that the holster rides. A straight up (also called a 0 cant) and a forward cant are typical in the shooting industry.

Bodyshield - A term used to describe a shield that serves as a protective barrier between the weapon and shooter's body.

Tension Screw - Refers to a screw based device mounted within the holster itself that allows the shooter to adjust the draw tension to his/her specifications.