Dealing with Gyms, Bathrooms and Other CCW Hassles

Dealing with Gyms, Bathrooms and Other CCW Hassles

The world of CCW is fraught with hassles: places where carry just becomes difficult or inconvenient. The laws alone can be complex and limiting, and keeping aware of them is a big part of our job here at USA Carry.

When I talk to other folks in our CCW community, I get some questions over and over again. Chief among them are “What do I do about public restrooms?” and “How do I handle going to the gym?”  These are good questions; you’ll need to relieve yourself and I applaud your efforts to stay in shape . However, carrying while you do so brings additional complications, so let’s talk about some solutions.

First and foremost:

  • Follow the applicable laws relating to your permit. It’s important to stay within the letter and spirit of the law if you’ve sought the protections a CCW license offers.
  • Remember that the rules of gun safety apply at all times. This is true when the firearm is holstered/stored, no matter what you’re doing at the time.
  • Get up to speed on safe car storage for your firearms. There are some circumstances or situation which might make it easier to just stash the weapon in your vehicle. Make sure you’re ready.

With that out of the way, we can talk about the particulars of this aspect of CCW. Several prominent commentators have posited that public restrooms can operate like de facto gun control, making it so difficult as to be effectively impossible.

This has some credence to me; there’s no good way to safety disrobe, use the facilities, keep your weapon secure in the meantime, and then clean up and leave. If there’s a flat surface upon which to rest your piece securely, that’s the best option. If you’re seated, resting the gun inside your pants on the floor is another. I might suggest keeping a bag or briefcase handy just in case—that might lessen the difficulty somewhat.

Gyms tend to give you a lot more options—most of them have lockers, and if they’re sturdy and secure, that might offer a solution. Just make sure that your gym allows that kind of thing and double check that you’ve secured the weapon. I might consider a trigger lock just to be doubly safe. And please—make sure that your CCW remains out of sight the entire time. There are a lot of folks out there who don’t understand the importance of concealed carry or your motives for doing so. While I encourage you to have respectful dialog with them about the subject, surprising them with a handgun isn’t likely to win you friends or converts.

Speaking of gyms: some people carry while they work out. I can’t say I recommend this, as I can’t see a good way to follow the rules of gun safety and keep a weapon fully concealed while you lift/spin/pilates/yoga. I won’t, however, make the decision for you; rather I’ll just ask you to think about whether or not a given activity allows you to follow the rules at all times.

If you’ve had experiences with any of this, good or bad, I’d love to hear about them either in the comment section or via email. Until then—stay safe out there.

 

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  • sutherland.carol

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  • Matt Froehlich

    I generally keep it w/me at all times in a backpack. I use the backpack for my towel, water, headphones, etc, so it looks completely natural. I’d rather have it there than in a locker. Locked locker or not.

    • G50AE

      You might consider a fanny pack, I see them in the gym all the time and no one seems to think anything about it.

  • G50AE

    One point that the author missed is that a lot of public places are starting to have a third single user restroom, either designated as Handicap, Family, or Gender Neutral. If you can find one of those, you will be all alone and concealment will not be an issue.

  • Randmo

    Since I pocket carry a little .380, it’s no problem to ‘drop trow’ anywhere (OK, not ‘anywhere’ but you know what I mean 😉 ). Also, I like to run for my exercise and wear a belly band while doing so. So I’m not too concerned about these issues.

  • G50AE

    I am surprised the author did not mention using a fanny pack while at the gym. I see them all the time and no one thinks a thing about it.

    • Janet64546

      I am profiting close to 6-8 thousand bucks on monthly basis with an online job i found on internet. For anyone prepared to do easy at home jobs for 2-5 hrs every day at your house and earn good profit in the same time… This is a gig for you… UR1.CA/p7vxa

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  • Saltporkdoc

    When I carried a small semi-auto and had to use a public restroom: 1) I ALWAYS used a stall no matter what “business” I had to attend to, preferably the handicapped which I qualify to use, AND, 2) I always sat! Then, 3) I pulled my piece (safely), 4) laid it on a paper towel on the floor and 5) put my foot on the piece VERY carefully.
    I am not a believer in leaving a weapon in an unattended car, though I do have a lock box affixed inside to store my weapon in a last resort situation. Given a choice I would opt for the fanny pack because I then know exactly where the weapon is and who has control of it.

    Another option for bathroom issues is to consider using the “family” bathroom which is lockable and private! Usually cleaner too!

  • Sgt. Blutwurst

    I would recommend having a heavy-grade plastic storegrocery bag that I could put the weapon in so that I could take it out of the holster. It needs to be heavy enough not to be transparent, but then the bag with gun could be put on the floor between your feet until you are ready to reholster it.

  • Mordecaidrake

    I just switched over to appendix but when having to use a stall what I’d do is fold my boxers over the grip of the gun, made it pretty invisible. I haven’t worked out how to fix appendix yet, probably the same method though. As for when I’m at the gym, I typically don’t carry because there’s no way to do it without being spotted. I’ve left it locked in my car, then gone into a stall after my workout to put my holster back on but again it’s rough. I’ve thought about off body carry, but that scares me.

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