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Battle Belt Suspenders Under a Plate Carrier

Battle Belt Suspenders Under a Plate Carrier – Is it a good idea?

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Military equipment has been carried around the waist for thousands of years. Battle belts have been used in America since at least the 70s and 80s through the All-Purpose Lightweight Individual Carrying Equipment (ALICE) era. Battle belts are for both ‘making holes and plugging holes.’ Essentially this means they are for carrying weapons and medical supplies. The aim is to keep a belt as light as possible. 

But when it comes to gear, there are a lot of different opinions out there. Some people think that battle belt suspenders should never be worn under a plate carrier, while others believe that it is a great way to add extra support and stability.

So, what is the truth? Is it a good idea to wear battle belt suspenders under your plate carrier? In this article, we will explore both sides of the argument and help you make the decision for yourself!

What Is The Point Of Wearing Suspenders With A Battle Belt? 

The main purpose of wearing suspenders with a battle belt is to ensure that the weight and the load of the belt is distributed more evenly and doesn’t feel as though it’s weighing you down. Instead, it allows you to carry the weight of the belt on your shoulders instead of feeling it around your waist. This is important to maintain the right level of agility. 

Pros And Cons Of Wearing Suspenders 

There are both benefits and disadvantages of wearing suspenders with your battle belt. 


Arguably the biggest benefit of wearing suspenders with your battle belt is that it balances the weight more across your entire body. This will ensure that it feels like you are carrying far less weight overall. Without suspenders, you may feel the drag from the belt, particularly when you are trying to sprint or move quickly. 

There are alternatives to a harness system. However, a harness won’t trap as much heat. As such, it will provide an increased level of comfort, particularly through summer weather. In contrast, something like a plate carrier is going to trap the heat directly on your chest. 

It may also be quicker to reload from a belt compared to a plate carrier if you have at least one rifle mag pouch set up here. 


One of the main issues with wearing suspenders is that they will reduce your level of MOLLE (Modular lightweight load-carrying equipment) space. You also won’t be able to carry as many mags. However, you can address this issue by using a speed loader or conserving your ammo as much as possible. 

A harness will not provide as much protection as an alternative such as a plate carrier. If you want to ensure that you are gaining the best level of defense, then you need something like a battle plate for your chest. 

You may also find that your gear bounces when you are moving. This issue can be addressed by ensuring that you are tightening your belt as much as possible and wearing it at the right point. 

Should You Wear Battle Belt Suspenders Under Your Plate Carrier?

The answer here will depend on the type of equipment that you are using. Suspenders can be worn under your plate carrier if you are using slim, non-padded suspenders. However, suspenders with more bulky designs are quickly going to become uncomfortable when worn like this. 

Could You Wear Them Over Your Plate Carrier? 

Wearing your suspenders over your plate carrier isn’t a viable option either. Modern plate carriers are not designed for this type of setup. The suspenders would sit awkwardly around your shoulders and you would feel them when you move around. It will also mean that accessing items on your plate carrier setup is more difficult. 

What Would Be The Best Option?

Arguably the best option here is going to be managing your battle belt setup so you don’t need to wear suspenders. Wearing a battle plate provides the additional protection you require as well as extra room to hold your ammo, weapons, and supplies. With the right setup, you can still guarantee a fast reload from your belt without feeling the weight around your waist. 

If you do need suspenders, then ensure that they are slim enough to fit comfortably underneath your plate carrier. 

Key Takeaways 

Here are the key points that you should consider when choosing whether to wear battle belt suspenders under your plate carrier:

  • Suspenders are great for managing extra weight from your belt
  • They’re awkward to wear with a plate carrier unless you choose a slim design
  • Your best option is to manage your belt weight to ensure harnesses aren’t needed with a PC and belt setup. 


We hope this helps you understand some of the considerations that you should think about when using a harness with a plate carrier. 

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