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How to Play Paintball Safely

Apart from having fun, an important consideration when you play paintball is everyone’s safety. Although paintball is one of the safest sports you can play, the safety aspect should not be taken for granted. In paintball there is an important emphasis on putting safety first; being mindful of yourself and other players. Here are some useful tips for keeping safe when you play paintball.

You should wear goggles or a mask at all times during a game. Ideally, the mask should cover the whole head, fit securely and be comfortable. Regular glasses or sunglasses are not sufficient to protect you from fast flying projectiles when you play paintball.

You should always wear thick, long sleeved shirts and full-length pants to fully protect your arms and legs. Better still, cover your vulnerable areas with hard plastic body armour or a padded paintball suit. Collars, boxes and gloves all give added protection.

You should have no physical contact with another player; paintball is a non-contact sport. Keep your distance when you play paintball.

You should not shoot at an opponent within a range of five meters. A paintball can cause serious injury when fired at close range. When you play paintball it is wise to keep a distance of five meters between players at all times.

You should not shoot at a player when he is holding his gun aloft with both hands. A player in this position has either just been marked and is leaving the field or he has surrendered. Either way he is defenceless and is not a target.

You should not consume alcohol before, during or after the game as it will impair your judgement and reactions drastically. You will endanger yourself and other players when you play paintball.

You should have a plug inserted in the marker’s barrel at all times when you are off the field to avoid accidental firing. You should avoid contact with co2 if your gun has leakage as it can cause freeze burns on your skin. Never carry your marker by its co2 supply hose as this could lead to leaking gas.

You should maintain your gun and equipment thoroughly to maximise safe and effective performance. Ideally, you should strip down your gear straight after every game, then clean and lubricate it before you put it away so its ready to go the next time you play paintball.

You should never fire your marker outside of the playing boundaries or at anyone not involved in the game; including the referee!

You should never leave your gear, especially the marker, unsupervised between games. Always ensure it is locked away safely when not in use and kept out of the reach of children.

You should invest in chronographs to control the speed of your paintballs. The maximum allowed velocity required for safety when you play paintball outdoors is 300 feet per second (200 feet per second indoors).

You should avoid blind-firing; this is a dangerous practice as you can’t see what you’re firing at and you could hit someone at point blank.

You should avoid overshooting; it is unnecessary and potentially dangerous to repeatedly shoot at an opponent once you’ve marked them.

Paintball is safe if you follow all the safety precautions and are mindful of yourself and others. Don’t be complacent when you play paintball. Any sport is dangerous if you play it  irresponsibly. Safety needs to be worked at to ensure you get the maximum enjoyment out of the sport.

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