Paintball is a sport that’s taken the country by storm, with over a million players participating in the exciting, action packed game of player elimination. If you or anyone you know wants to play the game, there are several things to consider, and that includes the issue of paintball gear. While the main component of the game is a paintball ‘gun’ or ‘marker’, paintball gear may also include headgear, special clothing and accessories for both participant and their equipment.
Paintball gear will most likely be determined by player skill. Beginners often make due with basic rented equipment and old clothes and a pair of goggles. For those who really get into the game, paintball gear and equipment becomes serious business that involves purchasing equipment and accessories that may cost hundreds to thousands of dollars. In addition to the paintball gear that’s considered basic, such as paintball markers and pressure systems for propelling paintballs to their intended targets, paintball gear also includes protective headgear, goggles, gloves, and protective vests and pads. Depending on whether game play is causal or tournament, the amount of protective gear is solely up to the discretion of each individual player. Keep in mind, however, that it’s not dangerous to play the sport, and paintballs don’t exceed certain speed velocity, that while painful when hit, are nothing to cause alarm. The exception is if a person is hit in the eye or ear with a paintball, which is why protective headgear and goggles are a requirement to play. Paintball gear masks are designed to withstand a direct hit by a paintball that travels over 300 feet per second.
The paintball ‘gun’ or marker, requires a loader or hopper, in addition to some kind of propellant to work. Most paintball gear guns or markers work on compressed carbon dioxide (C02) or high-pressure air tanks that are worn in a back harness. Several different kinds of paintball gear guns or markers are available depending on skill level. A Rec-Ball player marker like the Tippmann 98 Custom costs around $140 and is good for beginners. For Scenario players, try something like the Tippmann A-5. This model will cost about $200, and for Tournament play, many participants choose the marker that best suits the field position they usually play, which may include, front, mid or rear positioning. Front players like to use a marker that allows for mounting of an air supply bottle that can also serve as a ‘gun’ stock. Middle field players shoot hundreds of rounds, so a high-pressure air system is best. For those who play rear field positions, paint streamers are popular, so a dye marker is your best bet.
No matter what your skill level or what your field position is, paintball gear is available to suit your needs. Shop around and compare prices and always make sure you know what you need before you start shopping. Good buys can be found, so take your time. Finding the correct paintball gear isn’t difficult if you know what you’re looking for.