Summer is finally here and you know what that means – it’s paintball season! You and your friends must be excited to get out there and shoot some paint and win a sweet victory. But there’s just one problem – the heat.
Summer is always a great time to play paintball because you don’t have to worry about getting wet from the mud and the rain. However, with summer comes very hot weather making you not want to wear anything for your paintball game. Is that possible, wearing short and light clothes? You’ll find out here.
Things to Wear for Paintball During the Summer
Before you read what you should wear, know that you’re supposed to wear functional attire. As you will see later on, not everything you’ll wear will be fashionable, and that’s okay. Your goal here is to be protected while staying cool for your game.
One of the most vulnerable parts of your body is your head so it’s only fitting that you pay attention to this. When protecting your head for a paintball game, you will have to wear a cap, beanie, or hood to cover your hair and your head. Because it’s summer, you might want to tie your hair up or wear a bandana to keep hair out of your eyes.
Shouldn’t you be lessening the things you put on your head? If paintball wasn’t about hitting you with those balls, then you don’t really have to wear anything underneath your visor. But then again, paintball doesn’t work that way. To keep you cool, just opt for cotton bandanas or a thin beanie instead of those heavy and thick woolen headcovers.
A hoodie can be a good idea for the cooler seasons but it’s just going to be an annoyance in the summer. Hoodies are often thick and it adds heat on your neck, so you might get extra hot with them. Just stick to thin headgear underneath your visor.
What about your top? Can you wear tank tops? Of course not! Even if you will be given a set of coveralls (often camouflage coveralls) to protect your clothes from getting paint on them, this is still no excuse to wear revealing clothes. At the very least, you have to wear a shirt with some elbow pads if you’re that annoyed with layers.
However, the ideal top to wear is a thin long-sleeved shirt. It can be made from cotton or dry-fit so that moisture doesn’t just get absorbed by the shirt. If you have a sports top, the better because their material is built for sweating and heat.
When it comes to the color of your tops, refrain from wearing dark colors. Dark colors absorb heat making it very warm in your body. Stick to wearing pastel-colored or just a white long-sleeved top. If you’re worried that your light-colored shirt will give you away, remember that you’re also wearing coveralls.
Should you wear vests? No, you don’t have to especially in this kind of weather. However, if you play in the cooler seasons, then you should definitely wear a vest.
You can’t wear shorts to paintball no matter what the season. So what else can you wear? Stick to lightweight track pants, cargo pants, or jogging pants. As much as possible, they should be loose on your skin so they don’t get sticky on your legs when you start to sweat.
Don’t worry, your coveralls also include some bottom pants that will protect your legs from getting bruised. However, some paintball businesses don’t provide knee pads, so if you want additional protection, it’s best you bring your own.
What color should your bottoms be? Similar to your top, it should also be light-colored. Avoid wearing black or dark blue because they also absorb heat a lot faster than lighter-colored ones. If you’re worried that your outfit doesn’t match, don’t be. A paintball game isn’t the time to be fashionable, but rather, functional.
Just because your feet won’t often be a target doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t protect them. You’re definitely not allowed to wear sandals even if they’re sandals for hiking. There’s no getting away with this one despite the warm season.
So what footwear is best for paintball? Most paintball arenas allow you to wear rubber shoes, but it’s ideal to wear boots or ankle-high shoes. Why? It’s because ankle injuries are pretty common in paintball. If you want to avoid getting ankle injuries, then you should wear footwear that provides additional ankle support.
Don’t wear thick boots though. Stick to boots that are lightweight. Needless to say, heeled boots are not allowed. Even if they give you ankle support, you’re compromising your balance here if you don’t wear flat shoes. Underneath your shoes, just wear thin socks that are moisture-wicking.
5. Other Protective Gear
Is there anything else you should wear during summer paintball sessions? While they are not often required, additional protective gear can help you stay safe. After all, you’re still playing paintball. Most paintball establishments will provide you with the basics – a camouflage suit and a protective visor. The rest, you can bring yourself just to be sure.
Since it’s the summer, you don’t have to go full-on protective attire. In fact, just wear an elbow- and knee pads and you’ll be okay. Remember, you don’t want to add so many layers to your body because they all add to the heat you’ll feel.
What about gloves? Even if it’s hot, you should wear gloves. Hand injuries are the second-most common type of injury in paintball games, so it would be in your best interest to wear gloves. You don’t have to wear thick gloves, though. Weight-lifting gloves, golf gloves, or gym gloves will be enough.
Tips in Keeping Cool for a Summer Paintball Game
How else do you stay cool for your paintball game? Clothing is a huge part of it, but it’s not the only thing that can help you lessen the heat you feel when you’re actually playing. Here are some tips that can help you.
1. Play in a shaded area.
Can you choose where to play? Yes, you can, but not a lot of people know that. If the paintball place you plan to play in has a few fields for games, then ask if you can play on one that is shaded. It will be easier for you and your guide to play in these places because there’s not a lot of heat. You can also have more places to hide!
If there aren’t any fields that have enough shade, then try to stay close to trees and obstacles that can provide a bit of shade. They can also act as cover, so it’s a win-win!
2. Take breaks.
Are you required to take breaks during a paintball game? No, you’re not and there won’t be any timed breaks just like in school. However, you have to find time to take a break because this is your chance to recharge and freshen up. Unfortunately, you can’t remove your protective gear, but the best you can do is stay in a shade, take a few breaths and drink some water.
If you are out in the open, try to look for a shaded area or a tree where you can stay for a while. This will help you avoid an attack while getting a little rest on the side.
3. Bring a cooler with you.
Did you know that you can bring a cooler with you? Some people often bring two coolers – one for their paint cases and one for their drinks and food. Since paintball games can take a while, it’s important that you have a stash of nutrients and minerals with you.
You don’t have to pack meals though. You won’t even have time to eat them. But bringing snacks and bottled water will definitely help in keeping you from fainting. You can also bring electrolyte drinks with you to avoid dehydration.
4. Stay hydrated.
When you take breaks, make sure that you drink lots of water. The last thing you want to happen is get dehydrated. That’s not good for your team and most especially, for you. You’ll be playing under 90-degree heat, so it’s best to stay hydrated before, during, and after the game.
You can start by drinking two glasses of water before your game and then drink a few times during breaks. What if you’re not thirsty? Even if you’re not, it’s best that you drink at least half a glass. You’ll be sweating the whole time and you will be losing water. So make sure to continuously hydrate even if you don’t feel like it.
There’s no doubt that summer is one of the best seasons to play paintball. However, the only caveat here is the heat. If you wear the right clothing and prepare well for the heat, you don’t have to worry about leaving the game early because of discomfort.