I’ve worked with a number of inner/outer belt systems over the course of my firearms training, and I can confidently say that having a solid, well-outfitted, comfortable and capable belt system can absolutely make or break a range day.
There’s nothing worse than a poorly fitted, floppy, belt that doesn’t handle and carry your gear worth a damn, or a weak buckle or slippery fastener to make your entire rig feel like it’s on unstable ground and about to dump your entire loadout mid-exercise — not to mention potentially dropping your pants in the process.
On the other hand, a great belt system can absolutely make the experience of learning new skills at the range exponentially more fun and worthwhile.
The things I enjoy most about a good battle belt in general, are of course, the ability to carry all of my essential gear and accessories on my waist, within convenient reach, and an easy method of applying and stripping off the belt system throughout the day without having to completely reconfigure everything in the process.
But more so, perhaps one of the best benefits of training with a battle belt is the mindset and thoughtfulness you are required to invest into your own belt set-up, and tailoring the gear and placement of each piece of kit to perfectly suit your personal training needs and body dynamics. Spare mags, flashlight, IFAK, tourniquet, knife or multitool, you name it — you can add it all to your battle belt and then develop your training and protocols to work hand-in-hand with your loadout.
Becoming familiar, comfortable and confident in the set-up of your belt and knowing you can rely on it comes with time and examining the performance of the belt under intense use, then making regular adjustments as necessary during ongoing training in order to determine the absolute best arrangement for you.
It all starts out with the foundation, though, the very heart of the belt itself, and this is what Kore Essentials understood all too well when they set out to change the firearm belt industry by making one of the sturdiest, firmest, and most durably constructed battle belts on the market today.
I recently got my hands on the Battle Belt “Black: Complete Kit” from Kore Essentials, which includes their Black Battle Belt, which measures in at 1.75″ wide, the Black Battle Buckle, Inner Velcro Liner Belt which is 1.5″ wide, one belt keeper Velcro loop, a handy flexible measuring tape, hex wrench and set screws. It’s essentially everything you need in a single box to measure and fit yourself for your Battle Belt and assemble the belt system.
The cool thing about the Kore Essentials Battle Belt, and a first as far as I am aware with battle belts, is that it incorporates a small hidden track adjustment system with 20-plus sizing points that allow you to adjust the fit of your belts sizing in ¼” increments. This small sizing control measure allows wearers far more control over sizing the belt specifically to their waist than they would otherwise be able to achieve with conventional belt-sizing holes.
This system of micro-adjustments also touts itself as being easy to adjust, whether you happen to be sitting down, walking, running or otherwise bending and maneuvering during intensive training exercises. Simply slide the belt buckle to ratchet it tighter, and lift the easy-to-actuate lever on the buckle to loosen. On a personal note, there’s also just something really satisfying about the subtle ratcheting sound that this thing gives off when you adjust it.
The Kore Essentials Battle Belt is one of the most rigid two-belt systems I have ever run and handled. The strength and rigidity easily allow you to accessorize and accommodate full-size firearms, spare magazines, dump pouches, trauma kits and any gear with a total overall weight rating of up to 20-plus lbs. The outer battle belt consists of a nylon web material, flanked by two rows of Molle, and includes a Kore Essentials super-fiber inner lining & Kore Essentials proprietary Reinforced Power-Core as the center-most material, which provides the rigid center.
The extremely rigid, reinforced Power-Core material in the center of the belt is legitimately some of the toughest, most stable material I have ever experienced being worked into the center of a battle belt, making it virtually impervious to twisting or flexing. The inner Velcro liner belt made of the nylon web material easily and smoothly feeds through the ample belt loops to hold up your pants and provide support to the weight of the outer battle belt.
The two-belt system works in conjunction with one another, and they must be used together as two equal parts of the whole system. Additionally, the Kore Essentials Battle Belts are 1.75″ wide and come packaged as one-size-fits-most, allowing the user to cut the belt down with their easy-to-follow instructions, measuring tape and guidance, and can fit any waist ranging from 24” up to 48″. The belt is secured to the buckle by a heavy-duty tooth clamp, and then you insert and tighten down two set screws with the included hex wrench — and this keeps it firmly secured in place. The whole process of sizing, cutting and securing all of the aforementioned aspects took me maybe ten to fifteen minutes total. A nice touch that some may overlook, but I find extremely worthwhile, is the provided loop of Velcro material, also known as the Belt Keeper, that wraps around the belt to help keep the belt tip tucked flat against your waist during use.
I got my Kore Essentials Battle Belt cut down to size, secured the buckle and outfitted it with my favorite range accessories in a matter of minutes. The rigidity of the outer belt is vastly superior to anything I’ve run previously, without being uncomfortable during bending, stretching and maneuvering. I appreciate the quality of craftsmanship inherent in the belt itself, down to the multiple layers of stitching and flawless cuts, but also the sturdiness and finish of the heavy-duty buckle itself.
Out of the box and onto my waist, I was impressed with the Battle Belt in all of the areas that matter to me: construction quality, rigidity, ability to accept my accessories and pieces of kit, and aesthetic appeal. I’m very excited to run it as my primary battle belt over the next many months and to report back with my findings. But out of the gate, I think I may have a new go-to piece of kit when it comes to range-day training.
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