Ladies, let’s face it, male store clerks have no clue how to advise you when it comes to body type and handgun concealment. I was recently at a gun counter of a large chain store here in the St. Louis area. If I named them you would know who they were so I’ll just be polite as a courteous gesture and not name names. Being a firearms instructor I enjoy holding and shooting a variety of handguns but I’ve become particularly in love with the new Ruger 22 pistol as well as the Walther .380. The grip contour just fits my hand like a glove and shooting it with accuracy is a breeze. Now, I’m in no way giving up my Glock 19 because I can shoot pretty darn accurate with it, too! Anyway, back at the counter, the female store clerk helping me stopped a young male clerk to get his opinion and he began trashing the very gun in my hand at the time. My husband stood next to me absolutely silent but I could hear his internal explosions. HA!
Body Type and Handgun Concealment
I explained my reasoning for looking at that particular handgun was to consider the needs of my female students who simply can not carry a Glock 19 on their person all day long due to size, weight, and body type. The Glock 19 is difficult to conceal for short and small framed women. Then our unprofessional, young, male clerk proceeded to tell me that his wife was 5’11” and carried her 45 all day long. I just stood there and looked at him. Silently, I thought to myself, “I give you and your bride about 5-12 years plus having a few children along the way and you just might begin to understand women of all ages have special needs when selecting a personal defense firearm, especially when considering a woman’s hip/shoulder bone structure and their susceptiblility to pain under pressure.”
Though I wasn’t about to get into a public argument over the details of different body shapes, endurance levels, hormone balances, pre, mid or post menepausal ages – it was apparent to me – and my husband – that this male clerk would never have our business now or in the future. As an instructor to women, I realize the massive amount of variables any clerk will have to learn to deal with when selling a firearm to a woman. However, I also know that the more professional approach would be to allow the lady her opinion providing your opinion as mere suggestions to keep in mind when making your decision. A customer should never have to stand and listen to a store employee trash any item the store has chosen to put in their inventory to present to customers.
That said, ladies, also understand that military and law enforcement officers (LEO’s) will have a completely different purpose for the firearm(s) they carry on a daily basis plus the fact LEO’s are allowed to open carry which removes the problem of concealment women will always have to deal with. Every lady seeking to carry a concealed handgun for self defense purposes simply must make an individualized decision about what type firearm, size and carry placement is best suited for her particular body type, weight, bone structure, endurance level, etc. None of these very personal elements will ever be dealt with appropriately by male salesmen in large chain stores.
Now let’s talk about body types and handgun concealment for a minute. It’s no mystery to you how your body is shaped and that there are good, better and best places to conceal your firearm on your person. First, let’s think of all the physique options available for concealment.
- center waist front
- center waist back
- center chest
Now, let’s consider what body types might match a physique concealment location. In order to do this, I’m going to ask you to take a “Body Type Quiz“. It should only take you about 3 minutes.
Which body type are you?
Hourglass Shape: This is considered as one of the best female body shapes. Where the bust and hips measurements would be almost the same circumference, though the bust can be ‘one inch’ larger than the hips. The waist would be much smaller. A perfect hourglass shape is where the difference between the ‘waist and the bust’ and ‘waist and hips’ is at least ‘nine inches’.
Pear or Spoon Shape: If there is a wide difference in measurements between the hips and bust and hardly any between the chest and waist. Hips are ‘two inches’ or more larger than the bust and waist is less than 9.25? smaller than the bust.
Ruler(Rectangle) Shape: If there is hardly any difference in the measurements of waist, bust and hips. The waist is less than ‘nine inches’ smaller than the bust.
Conical(Triangle) Shape: Normally where the bust and waist are same but the hips are ‘at least nine inches smaller’ than the chest. The standard measurement is, bust 3.6? or larger than the hips and the waist less than 9? smaller than the bust.
Apple Shape: If the waist measures larger compared to the hip and chest. Read More . . .
Holster Options for Firearm Concealment
Next, we need to consider the type holsters available to accommodate your body shape in order to conceal your firearm successfully.
There are eight videos in this playlist that covers the following type holsters:
- Fashion Show
- Outfits & Multiple Holster Options
- Inside WaistBand
- Thigh Holsters
- Flashbang Demo
- Flashband Adjustments
- Marilyn Demo
- Remora Demo
How will CCW Classes for Women help?
Courtney Foster, a firearms instructor in San Diego, suggests women sign up for a Conceal Carry Class or Pistol Shooting Class before going to the store to buy a handgun. I couldn’t agree with her more. Moms and Guns Conceal Carry Class for Women offers a whole section specifically designed to help women with wardrobe and holster options when carrying concealed as well as handgun selections to consider.
The trouble is when the novice ladies shoot that little boom stick, it scares the bejeezus out of them. Then they feel stuck with it, the “fun” factor disappears, and they don’t continue with their training. When they shoot one of my semi-auto .22 or .380 or 9mm and even .40 glock! I hear “Oh! That feels good!” and “I like that!” And they’re safe and consistent and increasingly accurate with them. Read More . . .
Tom Kehoe, Editor Florida Bonsai Magazine at Bonsai Societies of Florida, commented on Courtney’s suggestion with the following:
Well, a revolver might be the best fit for a woman, but the approach that Courtney suggests is clearly the right one. It’s hard to generalize, but one of the biggest problems I see with women shooters is that they are trying to shoot guns supplied by their husbands/boyfriends/significant others, who absolutely KNOW what is best for the little woman.
My wife’s first personal defensive pistol was a SIG 225 that I had set up with some features to make the operation easier for her. But she has a degenerative hand condition and got to the point where it was very difficult to operate the slide. So she decided she needed something else.
First she thought that a pocket .380 would be just the trick, so we got a half-dozen together and she tried them out. After being bruised by three in a row, she gave up on the idea and turned to revolvers. She decided she wanted an ultralight revolver, so we got together a half-dozen snubbies of different weights and grips. But after dealing with the recoil on the ultralights, and the terrible triggers on some of the others, she ended up choosing choosing a three-inch sp101 — a solid stainless, five-shot .357 with a peculiar grip. She carries in a custom paddle holster and is quite pleased with the rig. Read More . . .
CCW Classes for Women Valentine Special
As you can see, body type, holster placement, age, bone density, etc., present more for women to consider in handgun concealment. The good news is that as more women become trained through CCW and Shooting classes, you will become more confident at what will be adequate for your needs. The bottome line is never allow a husband/boyfriend/significant other and especially not a strange male behind a counter intimidate you into making a decision you’ll regret by not practicing and training further in personal self defense.
This is a good time, ladies, to begin “hinting” around to that man in your life about getting that dream gift for you – a CCW Class for Women. You can put the page up on your laptop and let him find it or you can just tell him out right this is what you want for Valentine, Birthday, etc. Get your class scheduled NOW during this Valentine Special.
Thank you for stopping by to discover your body type and hangun concealment options.