Paintball is a fantastic sport that has fans from all over the world. Even non-competitively, paintball tactics and practices can be useful for a range of other things. However, for first timers new to paintball, the question we get asked most often is, “Does paintball hurt?” Like any contact sport, there may be some discomfort, especially from a close range hit. But if you’re playing right and maintaining proper safety (pads, masks, etc.) the pain and likelihood that you’ll get hurt is minimal and should not keep you from wanting to join in. There are several things you should bear in mind if you’re coming to play for fun or for competitively: Keep Your Mask On If On The Field If someone is unaware of your presence or if you are “out” you could be shot at and suffer serious injuries to your eyes and other facial features. If you forget everything else, never forget this #1 rule! Don’t Be Afraid You won’t have a good time if you’re stuck behind a bunker or wall trying to shoot out when no one is there. There may be a slight sting to paintballs from time to time, but you probably won’t even notice it once you get into the game. That being said, be careful what you expose because your opponent is looking for you, any part of you, and will shoot accordingly. Drink Plenty of Water It doesn’t matter if you’re playing in the summer or in the winter, paintball is a cardio intensive sport that will dehydrate you faster than you can say “water.” Don’t overdo it with water, as that can cause a number of problems after a heavy workout, but make sure either you or someone else keeps track of your water intake to ensure you have a safe game. Strategize and Work as a Team There are many ways to succeed in paintball, but the most continuously effective way to progress is to learn the strategies and keep contact with your team. Think of a tactical military unit. While they may have skills in being able to communicate non-verbally, they often rely on verbal signals to advance, keep safe, and impart important decisions. In paintball, verbal cues are used to find the opponent, neutralize them, and win the game. Learn To Enjoy It You won’t win every game, it’s a fact of life. But if you learn to enjoy the game you’re playing, you’ll never feel like a loser. Don’t skimp the small things like stretching, water, drills, and recovery and the rest is down to giving it your all. If you’ve done all those things you have nothing to regret and can only learn from your losses. If you don’t learn to enjoy the sport, well then, there’s no point in playing it is there? Have fun and be safe out there!