Gear Reviews

Paracord Survival Belt: Why You Should Wear One

Paracord Survival Belt
Samuel Funt
Written by Samuel Funt

A paracord survival belt could make all the difference in a survival situation. Now, there are certain kinds of survival situations where the preparation takes place over the long term. For instance, families can prepare for extreme category hurricanes by accumulating stockpiles of ready to eat food and drinking water. Usually, a hurricane will be preceded by sufficient advanced warning, so it’s possible to get ready and hunker down.

However, there are also survival situations which arrive like a thief in the night, with little, if any, warning. You might be visiting a friend in a different city when a massive earthquake strikes. Or for example, you might be somewhere far from home, when your vehicle and electronics are destroyed by a nuclear electromagnetic pulse attack.

In these kinds of situations, you may very well be far from home, and your usual stockpiles of food, water, medication and more. You will be forced to survive using only the items that you have, as well as those you can buy. However, certain disasters reach such magnitude that stores, supermarkets and all the usual sources of supplies become unavailable. They may remain closed because of lack of power or an outage in communications systems.

There may be chaos and widespread looting. The situation can become dire very quickly. Now, at a smaller and more micro level, a person may have gone into the wilderness, in order to go camping and become reacquainted with nature, when disaster strikes. He may have useful survival equipment, but because of a sudden flood or other natural disaster, he may get separated from the others and from his bags. He will then be forced to survive using only what he was carrying on his person when the disaster struck.

Paracord Belt

Image credit: thegadgetflow.com

Or the person may have been in a plane that crashed into the ocean, or in a deserted section of land. He might have been on a cruise ship which capsized. He may have been able to survive the crash or the sinking, but he may not have access to any bags or equipment. This is why it is important to always have basic survival equipment with you at all time.

It does no good to have a full complement of survival gear, if you don’t have it when disaster strikes. This helps to explain why companies have come out with useful survival items that can be worn at all times. This helps to ensure that, even if you lose your tent, your bag, your gear, and most everything else, you will still have some very useful survival equipment to rely on.

Benefits of paracord

One very good example of this kind of product is the paracord belt. Now, paracord is a very versatile and useful material. It was originally used by the military, as the material for the suspension lines of soldiers’ parachutes back in World War II. This material had a number of important properties that made it right for that job. It was strong, very strong.

The fact that it had a high breaking point was key, because those parachute suspension lines needed to support the weight of the soldier, his weapon, and all his rather heavy gear. Paracord was also somewhat flexible. This was also important because the added stretch in the material helped to dampen the shock that the soldier would feel, when his parachute deployed.

Finally, another major benefit was that paracord is very light. This helped to make this cord very useful, because it was light enough for soldiers to carry around, even after they had landed. This meant that soldiers used paracord to strap their equipment together, to haul equipment to higher locations, and many other uses.

The secret to paracord’s strength, flexibility and light weight is in its construction. There are strands of nylon which are braided together. At first, 2 strands are twisted. Then, 7 of those twisted pairs are braided together to form one coil. Then, this entire braid is contained in a nylon sheath, which is itself made up of dozens of strands of nylon. The usefulness and versatility of paracord hinges on the fact that it is made up of thin strands of nylon, braided into larger coils.

Paracord infographic

It was not long before companies were offering paracord products to the civilian market. While there are some products which use inferior materials, and a less robust construction, there are still paracord products that are just as strong and useful as their military counterparts. Since paracord can be further braided into various shapes and configurations, this has enhanced the utility of paracord even more. A great example of said versatility is our article on paracord projects where you can see a how a wide range of items can be built using paracord.

There are paracord wallets, lanyards, key chains, bracelets and other similar products. One product that stands out, however, is the paracord belt. The beautiful thing about this survival belt is that it makes the usefulness of paracord available to you, no matter where you are or what you are doing. The material itself is braided into the form of the belt. Since paracord can come in different colors, you can choose the belt that looks just the way you like it. For example, a classic black or brown paracord belt will work with most outfits, so you can always have one on.

Since the paracord belt is made of light material, it will be just as easy to wear as a regular belt. There will not be any additional intolerable weight. You can just put it on in the morning, and not think about it until you need it.

Another key benefit of the paracord belt is that you will end up with a much longer section of paracord to work with. This is in sharp contrast to a paracord bracelet which could also be very useful, but which will not give you as much material for your various survival related needs. A belt, on the other hand, will contain a lot more cord which can be very useful in a survival situation, especially one which takes place over an extended period of time.

Paracord in case of injury

If you have a paracord belt on you at all times, you can rest assured that no matter what happens, no matter what sudden emergency strikes, you will always have this useful and even vital piece of survival equipment at your disposal. Since you are wearing it, you are much less likely to lose it in an emergency. As far as the various uses of paracord go, there are dozens and dozens of these and many are illustrated in our piece on emergency uses for paracord which we invite you to read.

Paracord can help you work your way through an injury, transport heavy items, ensure that a group remains together, help you catch food and much more. More specifically, paracord has a number of important uses, in case of a medical emergency.

If you or a companion are injured and you end up with a broken bone in a limb, such as an arm or a leg, paracord can be used to construct a split. If you can find two fairly straight branches or similar items, you can use the cord to firmly attach those sticks to both sides of the broken bone, securing it from further injury. Padding can be integrated into the splint in the form of clothing or some other cushioned material. This splint should be good enough to allow you to make your way to a place where the injury can receive more advanced care.

Paracord Uses

Now, there will be situations where the injured person will not be ambulatory at all. He may be prevented by injuries from walking or putting any weight on both legs. Or she may have fallen ill or unconscious, for various reasons. In this case, a stretcher would be one way to more quickly move the person to the chosen destination, while avoiding injury, and also without imposing undue physical stress on the bearers.

Like the splint, this will start with two stout branches or sticks of sufficient length, or some other similar material. The main material of the stretcher where the person will lay can be made up of sturdy clothing such as jackets or coats, and the sticks and fabric material can be lashed together with paracord. Such a stretcher will allow even one or two people to carry an injured person a long way, and at a rapid pace.

There will also be cuts, lacerations and similar injuries which require stitches because bandages and similar equipment will not be enough to close the wound. This is where the internal nylon strands of the paracord will be very useful. The exterior nylon sheath can be cut open, exposing the strands within. It will then be possible to use one of the single strands as a thread for stitching the wound. What will be needed is a needle.

The best situation would involve having a needle in an emergency kit. If this is not available, it may be possible to make a makeshift needle from bone or similar material. Here, the nylon strand will help you to close a bleeding wound well enough, until you can have it looked at in a medical facility.

While there are some people who say that paracord can be used to create a tourniquet to stop profuse bleeding, it has also been pointed out that this type of cord is not a good choice for a tourniquet. This is because it will tend to cause damage to the affected tissue, while not being effective enough to cut off the blood flow. It would be better to use some other material for a tourniquet instead.

Paracord and food searching

Aside from the usefulness of paracord in medical emergencies, this material can also be very useful in a survival situation that requires you to find food. If you find yourself near a stream or similar body of water, you can take out long sections of the internal nylon strands to use as fishing lines.

Makeshift hooks can be carved out of wood, bone, rock or something similar. Lures can be made using shiny materials or objects. And these fishing lines can be cast into the water, with the other end connected to branches or some other fixed point nearby. With time and luck, this simple setup could yield a fish or two.

A long section of paracord could also be attached to a weight and used to knock fruits, coconuts and bird nests out of high trees. This could offer some much needed protein, or even something to drink in the case of coconuts.

A similarly weighted cord could also be used as a rudimentary weapon in order to hunt for small animals. A more patient approach could also involve the creation of various snares in places where small animals usually pass. If designed properly and situated in the right spot, such snares could enable a person to catch a rabbit or something similar.

Any fish or game that you may catch can also be strung up somewhere safe using the paracord. This will allow you to preserve your catch for longer periods, because it is less likely to be eaten by other animals. This enlarges your food supply and maximizes your fishing or hunting efforts.

At the same time, this also enhances your personal safety. It is unwise to keep food somewhere close to your location, because this will tend to draw animals, including potentially dangerous ones, to where you are. The solution is suspending your food from a tree some distance away. This ensures that your food remains safe and accessible, while not compromising your safety. The cord from your belt can be used for this purpose.

If you are interested in learning more about finding food in a survival situation and keeping a good health while waiting for help, take a look at our in-depth article on survival tactics.

Paracord and your safety

Safety in the wild is an area where paracord can be immensely useful. If you find yourself having to make it through the night in dense undergrowth or a thick jungle, it is important to get into position off the ground. Ants, scorpions, other insects, and much larger animals and predators may do their hunting at night. You do not want to be on the ground when that happens.

Paracord can be used as a climbing aid. While it is risky to rely solely on this cord to handle your weight, it can be helpful to maintain better grip while climbing or to reach higher branches. It is also possible to increase the weight that the paracord can handle by using multiple cords at once, or braiding or twisting several of these together.

Paracord for safety

Once you’re up on the tree, the paracord can be used to secure you and your gear to the branches, so that you will not fall out as you sleep. Another option is to create a paracord hammock, net or seat by stringing the cord across trees and branches. This may not be high enough to protect you from larger animals such as bears, but it will at least get you off the ground, so you will not be at the mercy of ants or similar insects.

To make your location more secure, you can also create various tripwire noise alarms using the cord. The idea here is to make it difficult for a large animal to catch you off guard, by securing your perimeter with noise makers. This will at least potentially give you additional time to protect yourself or climb further up a tree. In certain cases, paracord may also be helpful by allowing you to lash logs together in order to form a raft. Done properly, this could allow you to ride down a body of water, to cross a long distance more quickly or to get away from land based predators.

Paracord making things easier

There are also more simple but still valuable uses for paracord in the wild. It can be used to replace broken shoelaces, and it can also be tied around worn out shoes to keep them from completely collapsing. It can replace broken drawstrings on bags or pants. The cord can also be used as clothesline. This can be an absolute lifesaver if there is a pressing need to dry wet clothes, in order to avoid getting sick from the cold or even hypothermia.

This cord can also be used to repair or replace a leash for a pet dog. And it can be used to lash various people together, especially children, so that no one will get separated from the group, even in the darkness of night. These are just some of the ways in which a paracord belt could help you survive.

There is also the convenience of strapping all your equipment together, and into a convenient bundle. This could make traversing long distances a little less difficult. In snowy regions, the cord could also be used to make rudimentary snow shoes using bent branches. The reality is that this material is versatile enough to have a huge range of uses. All that is needed is some insight into the survival situation, paired with creative use of the survival belt.

Paracord

The strongest advantage of this material is that it will always be with you, thanks to the paracord belt. You will be wearing it whether you’re walking through a city or town, whether you are in a plane or on a ship, whether you are at home or in a foreign country. There is no need to carry some sort of bag. You don’t have to remember to bring it along. This belt can pretty much go wherever you go. It just makes sense to purchase and wear a paracord belt. This belt can play a huge part in your efforts to truly be prepared for anything.

About the Author
Samuel Funt
Samuel Funt

Samuel is a prepper with over 15 years of experience. Samuel is excited to share his knowledge and the things he learns while travelling in British Columbia, Canada where he lives and around the world.

  • Bobby L. Keiser

    This has been a great addition to my survival kit. The one I have is aesthetically pleasing, so I wear it casually, and anywhere I go. People has told me it looks cool, and some people were amazed at how “strange” it looks. But it is cool to have it ready for use in any dangerous situation that may occur.

  • Alex Lauther

    It is practical to make a belt with one strand instead of multiple so you can use it immediately in any emergency. Also, opt for a normal buckle instead of paper clips. I’ve tried making one last month and it looks great. :)

  • One strand belts are more practical but having a belt made of multiple strands has its benefits as well. You can opt to use the shorter strands for non-life threatening situation and you would sometimes feel you’re wasting good paracord for a small task.

  • There are several designs to choose from and you can always create your own to meet your own taste.

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