Close this search box.
Close this search box.



CALL: 678-961-3304


A battle belt, also known as a range belt, duty belt, or gun belt can be used for many reasons. In general, these belts are used for keeping all of your gear in one place securely, and comfortably. Battle belts are prevalent among the Special Operations community, mobile/static security contractors, police officers, and those who just enjoy getting some range time in. 

The primary purpose for your battle belt could be to carry a combat load, recreate the same holster or magazine positions every time you put it on, or just for pure convenience and comfort. Regardless of your level of expertise a battle belt is a serious augmentation to any kit setup with a wide range of applicability.

That also means that your battle belt is extremely important, so it is vital that you pick the right one. That is why we put so much time and effort into developing our own battle belts here at Blue Alpha. If you want a high-quality hand made a belt for yourself, check out our offerings here.

Today I just want to walk you through battle belts, which I have used extensively as a Special Operations Army Ranger and Contractor for over a decade. I have deployed 18 times to several countries, and many of which were warzones. I say all of that to say that I know a thing or two about these belts, and have used them more times than I care to count. So you can trust what I have to say here.

Camo colored battle belt

My Battle Belt Suggestions

If you are in the market for your first battle belt there are a few things you should be looking for. First, not all battle belts are made equal. You want one from a reputable company with hand-made products. If you want it to last, you should get a belt with a Made in America stamp as well.

Secondly, I highly recommend going with a two-belt system. The inner belt is enough to hold your pants up and act as a standard belt just without the buckle. Your battle belt will then attach to it. This system basically gives you a bit more security and keeps things in place, especially if you are moving a lot.

If you plan on wearing regular jeans or pants, ensure the width of the inner belt does not exceed 1.5 inches. If the battle belt is for security or law enforcement, then go with a 2-inch outer belt. For all other uses, a 1.75-inch will be the best choice.

The belt needs to be rigid so its form does not collapse when the accessories are attached to it. Having a MOLLE system along the belt allows for near-universal compatibility with the most commonly used holsters and pouches. Lastly, ensure the belt has a cobra buckle for reliability and the ability to quickly attach and detach the belt system with little to no adjustment required.

What You Should Put On Your Battle Belt

Have you ever heard of METT-TC? It is the Army equivalent of saying “it just depends”. If you are not sure how to configure your battle belt, it really does depend on METT-TC. To avoid going down the never-ending rabbit hole of every combination of pouches you could put on a belt, let’s just discuss a couple configurations I have personally used and why I liked them.

Outfitting a Heavy Combat Battle Belt

Soldier wearing battle belt

When I was a young Ranger conducting Direct Action missions in Afghanistan my battle belt setup and plate carrier was heavy with everything I needed to fulfill my duties regardless of what may come. During my first deployment, I was assigned as a grenadier. 

My plate carrier had five M4 magazines, an MBITR pouch, a utility pouch, and a day pack on the back. The pack held my water source, calories, SSE bags, chem lights, signaling equipment, and other standard items. 

My battle belt held 36 rounds of 40mm, another tourniquet, a small medical pouch, a dump pouch, an M4 mag pouch for an emergency reload, and a small utility bag that had extra batteries and such. You probably do not need 36 rounds of 40mm on your belt, but extra mags, a dump pouch for empty mags, first aid, and a general molle pouch are a good idea for any heavy-duty belt.

My M-320 grenade launcher was secured by a makeshift drop leg holster with velcro, my M4 all geared out and with a magazine (makes 7 mags total on myself for a standard combat load), a kevlar helmet with NVGs, and cargo pockets full of stuff. 

On the unlucky nights I was assigned to carry the litter and on the lucky nights I was assigned to carry a ladder. Having a battle belt helped me shift part of the load off my shoulders and onto my hips and allowed me to distribute the weight more evenly instead of stacking more magazines on the front of my plate carrier. Stacking the front of your plate carrier makes laddering up more difficult, getting over walls very difficult, and the uneven weight distribution will strain the lower back more than normal.

Outfitting a Medium Combat Battle Belt

Battle belt buckle

Fast forward to my 30s. I was conducting support missions as a Contractor in the same country but in a different capacity. In an effort to avoid significant scrutiny while driving we had to look slick above the waist. 

My body armor was concealed under my shirt and my cover shirt draped over my battle belt. My vehicle and go bag were an extension of my person and carried a majority of my gear. If things got bad while on foot I had my battle belt to sustain me and fight back to the vehicle. 

This time my battle belt held a holster for my Glock, two pistol magazines, two M4 magazines, a small medical kit, an extra tourniquet, and a handheld radio. This was the most gear that I could stash on my belt without being noticed, so there was no room for extra or “nice to have” gear. 

My rifle was covered and wedged between my seat, go bag (stuffed with munitions) at my feet, and the vehicle held a large med bag and other weapon systems. This time my battle belt needed to be slightly hidden and when on foot it was my only source to fight out of. That means I brought only the necessities required to get me back to my vehicle quickly.

Outfitting a Battle Belt for Home Defense

Just about every gun owner has a go to pistol either on their nightstand or close by for home defense. Although if you just use that pistol, you have no other gear. Are you going to carry an extra mag in your offhand? What about a flashlight? Put it in your shorts? What if you are not wearing the right clothing when you hear a bump in the night?

That is where the battle belt comes in. A lot of these belts are designed to sit on your hips and have anti-slip material on their backs. Plus, they do not need to go through belt loops. That two-belt system works great when you have time to put it on, but in this case, you need to act as quickly as possible. 

For a belt like this, you can put it on in seconds and instantly have all of your gear. This will make you ready to investigate a noise outside or give you a complete advantage over a home intruder. It takes the same amount of time to grab that lone pistol, so why not put your pistol in a battle belt?

For a belt like this, you will likely only want the most important gear. As I said, you need to be able to put it on fast, so a ton of gear is going to slow you down. Plus, you do not want to be fooling around with a dozen pouches looking for the equipment you immediately need during the adrenaline rush of a home invasion. Keep it Simple Stupid.

For starters, you will want a holster and pistol of your choice. Then I would likely include two extra pistol magazines. That gives you three magazines total, which is more than enough for your typical home invasion. Next, I would add a quality flashlight if you do not have one mounted on your pistol, and then a tourniquet on the very back of your belt for immediate use. You likely have a first aid kit in your home, so if this is home defense, you do not really need it on you.

If you use an AR for home defense, you should still include a sidearm on your belt. The only addition I would make is to add an extra AR mag to your belt. Between your two AR and three pistol magazines, you should have more than enough ammo to stop any home invasion.

Outfitting a Battle Belt for The Range

When you are headed to the range, you are in a nice and controlled environment. You do not need to worry about protection, as much as you need to worry about your performance. Battle belts are a necessity for all competition shooters, and they can greatly improve your day on the range as well. 

So you want a belt that fits you well, stays in place, and has everything you need to knock down some targets. Now if you just want a belt for your general fun at the range, you may not need a holster on it because you will be shooting a host of firearms. Although if you are at the range practicing for a competition, you will certainly want a holster for your handgun.

Other than a holster, you will want extra magazines for your pistol, as well as extra mags or speed loaders for your long guns. These are especially useful in three gun matches. You will also want a dump pouch for your empty mags if you are not dropping them on the ground in favor of speed. Your medical kit should likely be in your range bag, so no need to add it to your belt in this case.

Your Belt & Your Gear

To sum this all up, there are many ways to configure your battle belt. When setting up your battle belt consider the mission, the specific duties you need to fulfill, and the level of profile you are trying to fit. Regardless, an overwhelming majority of these situations will require a battle belt. Do yourself and your team a favor by ensuring you are prepared and able to effectively fulfill your responsibilities in a hasty manner.