how to ccw

3 Tricks For Staying Concealed While Concealed Carrying

It turns out that concealed carry isn't as simple as putting a pistol in a holster, throwing a shirt over it and going. All sort of things can happen that blow one's concealment, resulting in printing if not outright showing one's pistol.

How to avoid that happening? First, get a good gun belt, because it makes a big difference. Second, you're going to have to learn some techniques that aid concealment - like these three CCW tips.

Keep Your Shirt Managed With The Picard Maneuver

concealed weapon

The "Picard Maneuver" is named for something that actor Patrick Stewart used to do on the early seasons of "Star Trek: The Next Generation" in his role as Captain Jean-Luc Picard. (Certainly a noble enterprise.) It had to do with the costumes that the show used, as the first season or so featured different uniforms.

Gene Roddenberry, who created "Star Trek," surmised that people in Starfleet wouldn't wear the kind of clothing that most people wear these days. Instead of two-piece suits of wool or cotton, the idea went, they'd likely wear something more like Spandex body suits and insisted that the cast have Spandex unitards.

What Roddenberry didn't understand is that Spandex is wildly impractical as a costume, since it clings and bunches like crazy, especially - and here comes the key bit - when a person sits down. To counter this, Stewart would tug at the midriff area whilst he stood up, preserving the smooth appearance.

The Picard Maneuver is to do the same thing. One tugs at the hem of one's shirt, pulling it downward as one stands and keeps one heater hidden. Not much to it; just pull. It's that easy to engage the Picard Maneuver. If you're smooth enough, no one will notice.

Squat or Kneel Down Instead of Bending Over

ccw while squatting

Another good concealed carry tip is to kneel down instead of bending over. The reason is that most people tend to wear their gun somewhere between the small of their back and the point of the hip. Most often you'll see these referred to by their "clock" designations, corresponding to the hours on a clock face.

Small of the back is 6 o'clock, the hip is 3 o'clock, and the 5 o'clock to 3 o'clock areas are the most common concealed carry positions. What happens if a person bends over to ostensibly pick something up?

One's shirt creeps up, and what can happen is one's pistol and holster can be revealed for all to see. At home this is no big deal - it's your home and do what you want. However, out in the world...that's a whole other ball game. Blowing concealment might not be noticed, it might draw stares, or someone may have a 5-alarm freakout.

To avoid all this, one way to ensure concealment stays concealed is to squat or kneel down if retrieving any objects from ground level, instead of bending over. This way, one's shirt is far less likely to creep up and thus a concealed pistol in a waistband holster (either inside or outside) is less likely to become unconcealed.

Sit With Good Posture

posture while concealed carrying

Another trick to keeping concealed is to sit with good posture. Don't slouch into a chair; sit with your back held straight, as if you're sitting on a stool.

How is etiquette from the Victorian era relevant to concealed carry in the 21st century? A person who wants to be comfortable should be able to stay comfortable!

As you sit, your waistband shifts. Depending on exactly how your holster and pistol are situated on your belt, this can tilt the grip in a backward direction. This could lead to one's pistol showing or worse, possibly falling out.

Just like squatting instead of bending over, by sitting with good posture, it minimizes the effect that sitting has on one's carry position. With a good gun belt, one's holster and pistol shouldn't move much with regular motion while standing; by changing one's approach to how one sits and bends over, these effects can be minimized as well.

If one has a standing desk or convertible standing desk at one's place of work, so much the better.

Sam Hoober  

About The Author

Born in southeastern Washington State, Sam Hoober graduated in 2011 from Eastern Washington University. He resides in the great Inland Northwest, with his wife and child. His varied interests and hobbies include camping, fishing, hunting, and spending time at the gun range as often as possible.

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