Athletes and paintball players have something in common. For example, runners get that special high at the end of a race when the endorphins kick in. In fact, people that run often enough actually get addicted to it. They love it for the feeling they get during and after the run. There is a point when running becomes relaxing and fun instead of labored and tiresome. The main way to get this running high is to run a lot and to do it year round.
Paintball has similar characteristics to the sport of running. Once it gets in your heart, you will want to play a lot. The adrenaline rush and feelings you get are going to be stronger than that of typical sports. That is why it is classified as an extreme sport.
You will run around a lot and in the process get many adrenaline pumping episodes. You will find yourself running for dear life, jumping behind things, and shooting your way out of jams. Like combat veterans, you will feel a special bond with the other players. It isn’t something you can describe. It must be experienced. Like running, there are some things you need to overcome to have a fun time playing.
The Fear of the Ball
New players are afraid of being hit by the ball which can result in getting paintball welts and bruises . They may even hide in the bushes and not come out for the entire game. I know of one player who actually smeared a paintball on himself to show everyone he was out. He would rather be out than to really play the game.
Does it really hurt? It hurts enough that you don’t want to get hit. That’s what makes the game a thousand times more fun than Laser Tag. It will hurt a lot at close range and in certain areas. For example, the butt shot really stings because it is so close to the sciatic nerve.
Most of the time, you get hit about 50 yards away in the chest area. The paintballs don’t hurt too much this way. They hurt enough you want to get away from them, but not it’s not really that bad.
For new players, take them out and shoot them a million times at close range (just kidding). For my first paintball adventure, my friends shot me close up a few times right off the bat so I wouldn’t be afraid of the ball. Sure it hurt a lot, but every paintball since pales in comparison to this first paintball pain.
How to Use the Gear
New players should ideally shoot some rounds at home before they go out. They need to get comfortable with the equipment.
The most often thing that stops new players is their goggles. Goggles have a tendency to fog. The new players should be coached on how to keep the goggles clean and to use dish soap or spit to keep fog down. If they stick with paintball, they will eventually buy some high quality goggles to use.
The next item is that for cheap guns, sometimes you must take off the hopper and shake it to get the balls to go down. Another problem that happens often is that a paintball can break in the chamber. Once the gun is all sticky with paint the other paintballs will continue to break and the gun won’t work well. That why you should let the new players become aware of the gun cleaning equipment like swabs and such for the guns.
It’s important to really play. Some people hide far away from everyone because they are afraid of the ball or may simply have a bad attitude. These people never catch the spirit of paintball. To have fun, you need to really put out some paint, move around, and get shot. Hopefully you will get shot a lot so that you will overcome the fear of the ball and see the fun in getting shot. Sometimes we like to take turns shooting each other just to see who can take the most pain.
It doesn’t matter if you are really good or if your tactic isn’t superb. The main thing is to get into play and put out some paint that has the possiblity of getting the other team.
All new paintball players are afraid of being targeted and shot a thousand times. In all the times playing, I have never seen this happen. However, I have seen people get shot a few times that were basically avoiding everyone the whole time out of fear.
I saw a case of paintball on Judge Judy one time. A guy shot a girl in the forehead with a paintball. Since it was at such close range, it really swelled up. His defense was that he had a verbal contract and that he paid the girl ten dollars for the opportunity. The guy lost because you can’t put out a contract to get yourself assaulted.
Anyway, Judge Judy described paintball as a silly little game that she knew would be impossible for her to enjoy. The guy told her she should try it and that she might like it. Whether you like the guy or not is unimportant, but it is important to see how paintball works. The guy obviously loved the game enough that he encouraged Judge Judy to try it out several times. And, like in real life, she decided not to try it because she knew it wouldn’t be fun.
The real truth about paintball is that, if you give it a chance, it will most likely stick into your heart and you won’t see it any longer as a silly little game. Not only do you get a lot of exercise, you get an adrenaline rush and the opportunity to think strategically.
Running a Marathon and Paintball
It doesn’t make sense that someone would want to run 26 miles in the heat and get so tired that they feel like they are going to collapse. Yet, people run marathons and continue to do so for the simple reason of having fun (the endorphins).
Paintball is similar. To bystanders, it doesn’t always make sense that it is fun to get shot by a paintball that hurts a little and to spend a bunch of money on gear. However, like running marathons, ask anybody who does it and they will tell you it’s one of the most fun things they have done in their life.
Pump Paintball Guns
If you are new to paintball, consider a pump gun. They are inexpensive and are a great way to get started. You could get a few guys together and really play for not much cash. You can have a lot of fun with only three people. However, it is more fun to have about 10 players or more.