Are you in search of a suitable outdoor sporting activity for your little ones?
How about paintball for kids?
Paintball shooting is an exciting game where your kids can let out some energy while enjoying the serene outdoors.
The running around, dirt, and shouting are what make this sport so much fun for persons of all ages.
Is Paintball Safe For 7-8 Years Old Kids?
Yes, paintball is safe for children above the age of 7.
Paintball has become very popular among young children these days but parents are yet to fully embrace it as a kids’ sport.
We’ll not deny that there are safety concerns but with the precautions already in place, there is nothing to be worried about.
Every paintball arena has a qualified marshal whose job is to look out for your child’s safety at all times. The marshals also brief the kids on safety, best shooting angles, and other aspects of the sport that’ll make it fun and safe for them.
Is There A Kids’ Version Of Paintball?
Yes, some paintball arenas are now offering what’s been called junior paintball which is basically normal paintball made safer.
The thought that your kid will be out there at the paintball park all alone with no one but themselves to help them might be horrifying at first but trust us, the game is tailored in every way to safeguard your kid while still offering a fun experience.
In recent months, we’ve seen more and more kids ditching tech games for outdoor sports which are more captivating and adventurous.
To accommodate the kids in the sport better, manufacturers have developed equipment that shoots smaller paintballs at a considerably lower velocity.
These smaller paintball guns are also easier to load and operate so your little one can play as many games as they want with zero stress.
Why You Should Encourage Your Kids To Play Paintball Games.
It’s A Form Of Physical Exercise
To get by in a paintball match, the kid has to run around and roll over to escape ”enemy” fire. The physical demands of the sport make it a convenient fitness exercise for kids.
Unlike in our time when most of the games were outdoor, the kids of today spend most of their free time indoors and this can have negative effects on their overall fitness and health.
Paintball is here to solve this malady by offering a fun and at the same time physically demanding activity that kids love so much.
It Trains Them On Teamwork And Strategizing
Paintball games are mostly played between teams so to win, a group of kids must learn to work together towards a common motive.
While they play, the kids develop skills like effective communication and problem solving which will come in handy when they grow up and have to work with other people.
And also, paintball is an intense sport that calls for critical thinking and quick decision-making- skills that the kids will find very useful in their everyday lives as kids and adults.
It’s A Safe Way For Kids To Release Negative Energy
Children between the age of 7 and 15 are still in their self-discovery stage where they sometimes accumulate a lot of energy and aggression that needs a safe outlet, this is where paintball comes in.
It gives them a route to channel this bad energy without harming themselves or their colleagues.
How To Make Paintball Safe For Kids
It goes without saying that it is your duty as a guardian to ensure your child’s safety when they play- you can start by encouraging them to play on swept terrains (with no rocks) to reduce their exposure to harmful situations.
Some parents discourage their kids from playing on fields with numerous obstacles for fear that they’ll get hurt but we’ll tell you; obstacles do not pose any threat to kids, in fact, they make the game more interesting.
We’ve laid down a few rules you can apply to keep your child safe in the arena.
Get Them Low Impact Paintballs
This is one of the smartest ways to reduce the risk of injury for kids playing paintball games.
A low-impact paintball is simply a projectile designed for use by kids; it contains non-toxic paint, it is gentle on the skin and travels slower compared to adult paintballs.
And also as we’ve seen, some private paintball fields have special markers for kids. These guns fire slower projectiles that’ll hurt the kids less.
Get Them The Right Safety Paintball Gear- Size And Weight
A kid is only as safe as the gear they have on.
Most parents will invest in the best safety gear on the shelves but forget one key aspect; to serve right, the protective gear must be fitting and of manageable weight.
If the gear is too expensive, worry not as there are numerous private groups offering rental equipment although at an additional charge. Another option is dressing the kid up in old clothes that’ll act as their field outfit.
You see, when a kid’s gear is ill-fitting, it leads them to believe they are safer than they really are and this increases the risk of injury. The face mask, for example, can be oversized in which case it’ll from time to time shift along the face and expose sensitive parts.
Too heavy gear is also unsafe because it wears the younger kids down as they struggle to run around the paintball park and this can cause issues with their spine as it is still developing.
This is why we encourage you to have their child try out the gear before leaving the shop.
We’ve listed the paintball gear you’ll need to buy your child so they’ll have a great time.
- A thick, well-covering outfit to reduce the impact of paintballs
- A protective vest to act as a second shield (optional)
- The paintballs and paintball guns
- Compressed air for the guns as most of them are gas powered
- Stable and covering shoes or boots
Enforce Minimum Shooting Distance Rules
If you’re a paintball player then you know the pain that comes from a close-range mark.
By setting a minimum shooting distance, you protect the kids from unnecessary pain and injury as the closest a shooter can be is maybe 20 or 25 feet. This rule is quite common even in adult group matches.
To ensure the players adhere to this rule, you can introduce a penalty for any player who breaks it or just illegalize close-range shots so the marked players remain on the field.
Plan Matches Based On Ages
Letting kids play against their age mates only is another way to promote safety in the field.
A game between kids and adults is safe for the kids but when younger players go against their older counterparts, the game of paintball only gets riskier- the older kids might view their friends as worthy opponents, something they are not.
You can have adults in the game to ensure everyone adheres to the rules and so that no one will shoot close-range or high-velocity projectiles at another.
We insist on having adults on site because kids tend to want to try and see what’ll happen and that’s how they end up injuring their friends.
You can have a group for the 6-7 year-olds, another for the 8-10 bracket, and maybe a third one for the teenagers.
Another way is to allocate them, teams, based on body builds and growth patterns so the bigger kids can play against their equal-sized counterparts and vice versa.
Have An Adult Supervise The Games
Regardless of the ages of the kids playing, the games should always have an adult supervisor. You might want to trust that the 14 year olds will stick to the safety rules but kids, as we know them, will deviate at one point or the other.
With an adult present, there’s some degree of safety for beginner players.
Paintball is a lovable game for both kids and adults that like any other in its category comes with a few safety concerns, most especially for kids.
The good thing though is that with the right gear and adherence to rules, kids can safely play paintball games without fear of injury to themselves or other players.
Do not discourage your kids from playing because of their age or your fear for their safety; we’ve seen kids as young as 6 shooting paintballs and loving every bit of it.
If you are worried about your kid’s safety on the field, read the article above for tips on how you can make the sport safer for them.