Pain is part of the game when it comes to airsoft – what else would you expect when firing BB bullets from high powered air guns at each other? Plus, problems with non-hit taking means you don’t want to eliminate the pain, as failure to feel hits is unintentionally cheating. However, there are particular areas that you need to focus on protecting and efforts you can make toward reducing the severity of welts, bruises and cuts, without removing the feeling of being hit. Read on to discover your best options.
When you’re hit on the back of the arm or neck in airsoft, it really does suck. This is to be expected, weapons such as Krytac airsoft rifles - firing a 6mm at 350FPS - leave pretty substantial marks. Do you know what’s worse than the previously stated regions? Your face, particularly when you’re hit in the mouth or eyes. This is another level of pain and can have further implications asides from the initial discomfort. For example, if you’re hit in the mouth without an appropriate mouth guard, or worse, no guard at all, you could end up with a couple of broken teeth. Needless to say, while broken teeth can be bad, the consequences of taking a BB pellet to your eyes is much worse. So make sure you invest more of a conscious effort when protecting vital areas. Eye protection is the single most important piece of safety equipment in airsoft, but what is the best option when it comes to protecting your eyes and mouth?
Mouth Guard & Goggles
A mouth guard and goggles should be the bare minimum you use when playing airsoft. A high-quality set should be more than capable of protecting your mouth and eyes. Additionally, while this isn’t the primary objective - goggles and mouth guards come in a wide variety of options so that you can customise your look.
Full Face Mask
If you want some added peace of mind, a full face mask is arguably the best option for protecting your face when playing airsoft. Not only that - they also look pretty mean!
Mesh or Polycarbonate Lenses
Now, this could be an article all on its own! Clear lens glasses can (and do) fog up, I’ve not seen a single pair of “No Fog” glasses that live up to the claim. You’ll never fog a mesh lens, but you lose some contrast to your sight, and as there are gaps it does run the risk of letting particulates through! Whichever you choose make sure you use ones from a reputable manufacturer and if you use clear lenses make sure they have the appropriate safety markings (CE166 usually in the UK!)
You can wear shorts and short sleeve tops if you want, and you’re sure to feel the full force of a BB pellet if you do – there’s no worry for non-hitting taking! However, long sleeve tops and trousers are probably the better. The whole point here is to reduce the damage as much as possible, but not to the point where you don’t feel the hit. It may be tempting to layer up, however, doing so may mean you don’t feel the hit at all.
There are also other accessories that you’ll find useful for reducing damage. However, these are not to protect you from the BBs; they protect you from the environment you’re playing in. For example; knee pads are a must, lacking a good set can result in some pretty nasty sore due to the environment you play in, such as wooded areas, kneeling too hard on an unseen root can take you out of the game or worse!
Another accessory you should consider is a pair of walking or assault boots. Again, these are useful due to the areas you typically play within in airsoft, opposed to preventing damage from air guns. A decent pair should prevent you from rolling your ankles.
The objective isn’t removing the pain as a whole - you need to feel it when you’re hit, so it’s better to come away with a few bruises and play fair! Also, once you’ve played a few games, you do start to build a tolerance to the discomfort.
Needless to say, if you do sustain severe injuries, don’t soldier on, let someone know and act accordingly. Ultimately, if your wounds don’t heal properly, make sure to see a doctor.
If you’re new to the game check out our guide to what airsoft role should you choose for some helpful tips and insights for each role. Also, take a look at our seven essential airsoft accessories.