Paintball is an up and coming sport that has a variety of practical applications. But like most sports, safety is critical. Here are three reasons why you should always make sure to wear a mask on the field, stretch, and practice proper running, sliding, etc. Eye Damage Even if you take off your mask for a few seconds, a stray paintball could leave you with nasty eye and face damage. Your eyes are particularly vulnerable and sensitive, and a hit could leave you with temporary or permanent vision loss. So not matter what your reason, taking off your mask while on the field simply isn’t worth the cost. Tendon & Muscle Tears Paintball is an all body intensive sport. Players will often slide, run, dive, duck, and jump into position. Because of all this activity, it is important to stretch before playing. Without stretching, a simple slide can turn into an expensive and painful muscle tear. It can also leave the player on the benches for an entire season. If that doesn’t sound like fun, it’s because it isn’t. Broken Bones Or, if you somehow manage to avoid a muscle tear, you could very well end up with fractured and even broken bones. While stretching probably won’t help avoid a broken bone, smart play will. Even though you need to be aware of your surroundings and opponents, you also need to be aware of where you are and how moving will affect your body. Even being aware of your team members position is helpful so you don’t end up tripping and falling over one of them. Injuries come with any sport. It’s just a part of the game. But with simple safety precautions and awareness, those injuries can be limited and hopefully iced instead of a visit to the hospital. For more on paintball tips and tricks, follow us at SB Paintball each month.