Can your CCW Belt be too strong?


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marklbucla
October 19, 2008, 02:55 PM
I'm using an Uncle Mike's Instructor's Belt (just about exactly the same as the Wilderness Tactical) and have been getting serious back pain when I carry anything IWB. Holsters include a C-Tac, Minotaur, and Crossbreed Super Tuck. Guns were Alloy 1911s or a Kahr PM9.

I'm pretty sure that it's the method of carry because I'm using relatively light guns and decent holsters. My jeans were also bought big enough to fit it in there comfortably.

The question is, could the belt be what's causing me the problems? I'd pretty much doubt it, but it doesn't hurt to ask in the off chance that others have found it to be the case.

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The Bushmaster
October 19, 2008, 05:08 PM
More then likely it's the IWB holster and gun putting pressure on your back. Usually a belt too thin or too wide and on too tight will give you a belly ache instead of back pains...

Friendly, Don't Fire!
October 19, 2008, 05:15 PM
Check to make sure you don't have too thick a wallet or anything excessively thick that you are sitting on.:uhoh:

A lot of people develop sciatica as a result of a thick wallet in a back pocket onto which they sit all day (or most of the day).:banghead:

Now you know why I don't carry my S&W 500 Magnum 4" as a carry weapon. I do wear it in a Gene Desantis holster when hunting.
As a carry weapon---(after a while) my right leg would be shorter than my left and my pants would be falling down. LOL

BHP FAN
October 19, 2008, 05:17 PM
Try an outside the pants holster.Those inside the waistband ones tend to pull everything [includeing your back muscles] over to the stong side.on the belt holsters need a little more care to be concealed properly,but the pay off is in comfort.

Jim Watson
October 19, 2008, 05:31 PM
Agreed, I cannot wear an IWB comfortably for any length of time.
A paddle and a good concealment garment are what it takes, pretty much my IDPA rig with no logos.

thejetman
October 19, 2008, 05:34 PM
Speaking of belts. Where can I get a decent one?

Friendly, Don't Fire!
October 19, 2008, 05:52 PM
http://www.gunaccessories.com/galco/INDEX_BELTS.asp

Ghost Walker
October 19, 2008, 06:06 PM
Have you thought of carrying at 3:00 o'clock over your appendix?

marklbucla
October 19, 2008, 06:09 PM
I carried at 3:00. 4:00 doesn't work either.

Treo
October 19, 2008, 06:37 PM
Try putting the holster right behind the seam of the pant. also you may want to visit your family practicioner the have him look at your back. How long since you replaced your shoes?

Ghost Walker
October 20, 2008, 03:37 AM
Then I don't see where hanging the holster inside or outside your belt is going to make a difference or provide any relief. The advice on checking the type and condition of your shoes and where you carry your wallet should, perhaps, be considered.

Additionally, regular visits to a competent chiropractor might, also, be in order. In my experience a tight belt tends to alleviate back strain - not increase it.

Good luck!

CajunBass
October 20, 2008, 06:06 AM
Speaking of belts. Where can I get a decent one?

http://www.thebeltman.net/

They're not cheap. I tried the cheap ones. The folks here who told me to buy a GOOD GUN belt were right.

I've got a couple of these now. Worth every dime, believe you, me.

Deanimator
October 20, 2008, 06:52 AM
Agreed, I cannot wear an IWB comfortably for any length of time.
A paddle and a good concealment garment are what it takes, pretty much my IDPA rig with no logos.
Unfortunately, some of us really can't wear OWB. I NEVER wear untucked shirts. Jackets and such are out of the question in the summer months.

Fortunately, I can wear IWB. I lost a lot of weight due to illness, so my pants have the extra space needed. I also specifically looked for belts that would work well for CCW.

Here in Ohio, it's ok to carry (including in a car) in a closable container of some kind, like a day planner. This might be a good option for the OP if he wants to carry a substantial handgun, but can't carry it on his person.

Uglyoldpoorman
October 20, 2008, 07:32 AM
The belt could be to tight and could irritate the sciatic nerve causing the lower back pain. I had a neurologist diagnose me with that problem.

hankdatank1362
October 20, 2008, 03:03 PM
Speaking of belts. Where can I get a decent one?

I picked up a leather 5.11 dress gunbelt, with a polymer stiffener sewn in, from LApolicegear.com for $25 plus shipping. It's great.

highorder
October 20, 2008, 04:35 PM
http://www.thebeltman.net/

They're not cheap. I tried the cheap ones. The folks here who told me to buy a GOOD GUN belt were right.

I've got a couple of these now. Worth every dime, believe you, me.

I couldn't agree more! Call Jim the Beltman.

JImbothefiveth
October 20, 2008, 05:15 PM
I think it could be the belt, I've had belts hurt my back before.(But my back was already sore at the time.)

Erik
October 20, 2008, 06:29 PM
"Speaking of belts. Where can I get a decent one?"

I;ve had good luck with belts from Rafter S and The Wilderness; certainly there are worse options out there.

wahsben
October 20, 2008, 06:34 PM
I have and like belts from the Beltman and Rafter S gun leather

readyme
October 21, 2008, 12:29 AM
I have a holster and matching belt from K&D holsters (www.kdholsters.com) and they are awsome. The holster (called the Thunderbird) can be worn IWB or OWB, and is very nice both ways. The belt is a serious piece of work. When I compare it to my old blue jeans belt, it is like a Hummer vs. Civic.
In terms of "too strong", I think it comes down to gun/holster placement, not the belt.

hso
October 21, 2008, 10:53 AM
What hurts, where? There's a lot of territory to cover when someone says their back hurts, so give us a little more info.

marklbucla
October 21, 2008, 11:03 AM
Lower back, pretty much the area that a safety back brace would cover. Feels like a muscle strain, not anything sharp and piercing like it was a nerve. I threw out my back awhile ago; it was like that only not as severe.

JImbothefiveth
October 21, 2008, 06:12 PM
That sounds exactly like my experiance! Yes, belts can hurt it.

bhk
October 22, 2008, 11:42 AM
I must be strange, because I find IWB much more comfortable than OWB carry. Even with the best belts (like Beltman's), I find OWB holsters tend to pull away from my body much more than IWB setups.

I also think that super thick and stiff belts are not usually necessay for IWB carry. I much prefer my 1 1/4 inch Akers belt for my SW1911PD than my wider and stiffer Beltman. It is much more comfortable and provides plenty of support. When I do carry OWB with a heavier gun, the Beltman is my choice.

Mat, not doormat
October 22, 2008, 03:33 PM
You may be experiencing sciatica, which is irritation of the sciatic nerve through odd posture, or pressure. It does happen. Even happened to Clint Smith. He says that's why he no longer carries IWB.

I've never had any luck carrying a heavy gun without carrying something else to balance the load. Gave me back troubles when I was trying to deal with a shoulder rig. Was starting to do the same when carrying on the belt. One solution that worked for me was a triple mag carrier and flashlight carried on the offside. Another was a second pistol.

~~~Mat

Handyguy
October 22, 2008, 03:45 PM
Have any of you tried a belt from Looper Leather om Okla. City? They make a great belt in many widths for "pack'n. It is USA made of real leather with a backing to keep it from sagging. Check em' out!

marklbucla
October 22, 2008, 05:56 PM
Will Sciatica cause muscle strain types of pain or more of a stinging, sharper pains like if it was nervous?

ETA: I'm just going to do it OWB. I tried it for an even longer period of time and felt fine afterwards. My back was a little tired, but it's nowhere near the strain that an IWB put on me.

phantomak47
December 16, 2008, 01:16 PM
Question for beltman users, do I need the internal stiffner on the 1 3/4 belt , I will be carrying a Sig 226 and that is a somewhat heavy gun .

James T Thomas
December 16, 2008, 02:54 PM
I have an excellent, but quite stiff, leather belt of 2 5/8 inch width that I often wear. I attach a large frame revolver to it; "pancake" style on the belt holster.

I do get back pain after hours of wearing. The cause is the bottom edge of the belt impinges or "bites into" my upper buttok muscle. That is, the weight of the rig rests upon my lower backside where the muscle -tendon attachment flares outward. I begin to feel a nerve pinch sensation that seems; but is not so, to come from the lower seven vertebrae. When what it is -is referred pain. If I do not grasp the belt and raise the whole rig, I even begin to get muscle cramping. The belt is so stiff at the edges that it is bearing upon the skin like an edge. A smooth or round one, but it concentrates the weight to a small narrow area.

I'm hoping that the leather will relax. Break in, and until then I keep pulling my belt up routinely. -While watching that I do not give myself away to onlookers.

Rodentman
December 16, 2008, 07:30 PM
I just rec'd my natural color horsehide belt from The Beltman. It is 1.5" and is quite stiff. I didn't order an internal stiffener and think I made the right choice.

I really like this belt and I plan on wearing it every day.

sophijo
December 16, 2008, 07:51 PM
........some "core" exercises are a good thing. It's possible that's where you problem is. Anyway its a "win/win"!

Commander Crusty
March 9, 2009, 09:17 AM
I've given up on IWB because it makes my hip ache deep down inside. The same gun, same holster, but in an OWB holster does not cause pain.

Carrying OWB spreads the weight out. Carrying IWB puts the weight of the gun, belt, holster and pants on one little spot about the size of the pistol slide or revolver cylinder. Ouch!

mbr
March 9, 2009, 07:55 PM
One advantage of a good, stiff, leather belt is that it doesn't have to be cinched super-tight to support the weight of an average sized handgun. The leather does a good job of spreading the weight out so the rig doesn't sag. +1 on the Beltman by the way. My bullhide will easily support anything I care to carry.

You may try some back-strengthening exercises, after getting cleared by a doc, of course.

marklbucla
March 9, 2009, 08:01 PM
You may try some back-strengthening exercises, after getting cleared by a doc, of course.

Yeah, I'm about certain that's a key issue too. 10 minutes on a Wii Fit and my back will be sore for the next 4 days.

Bald Eagle
March 9, 2009, 08:05 PM
The best IWB option for me has been an elastic belly band. Nothing hanging on my belt or pants. Nothing shows outside my clothing and the gun and spare mag are held against my body, not pushed out against my pants by my body. Has taken a little getting used to, having them pressed against me, but after a week it was no big deal. I did have my wife modify the one I got so that I carry both in the back, not on the side. Got it from The Sportsman's Guide.

CajunBass
March 10, 2009, 05:42 AM
Question for beltman users, do I need the internal stiffner on the 1 3/4 belt , I will be carrying a Sig 226 and that is a somewhat heavy gun .

Neither of my beltman, belts have the stiffner and they work fine. My day to day carry gun is an all steel Colt Commander, which is pretty heavy too.

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