Airsoft is an outdoor sport that is fit for those who are keen on making decisions on tactics and strategies. It is a sport that involves running, hiding, and shooting at people with an airsoft weapon. An airsoft gun is the first requirement for you to start playing. Additional equipment like scopes, magazines, and gas canisters are next in your list.
Aside from your airsoft gun, you have to wear your protective gear before engaging in a game. In organized airsoft games, wearing armor and protective gear is part of the primary requirements. A face mask and goggles may suffice for you to enter a simple tactical game. But for additional safety and protection, you must consider a ballistic vest or body armor, gloves, and helmet. Full-body safety gear is crucial, especially if you will engage in a tactical military simulation game. The question now is why is it necessary to use protective equipment for an outdoor sport that uses toy guns.
Aim for Airsoft Safety
An airsoft gun is generally a toy gun that uses six-millimeter balls called airsoft pellets. Most guns can shoot at a speed of 60 meters per second to 125 meters per second. You can even upgrade your airsoft gun for its shooting to speed up to about 170 meters per second or higher.
At high speed, a direct-skin hit from an airsoft gun can result in a bump or swelling on the skin. While a direct shot cannot cause the skin to break, it is still enough to cause pain. Moreover, a hit in the eye results in serious injury and even blindness. For this reason, using protective gear is important.
Airsoft Safety Gear: What You Need to Know
During an active airsoft game, it is a must for a player to use safety gear. Here are the basic types of protective equipment that you should wear while playing airsoft.
Safety Goggles or Eyeglasses
Safety goggles or specialized eyeglasses are a must for all airsoft players. Even if you are just practice shooting, you should still have your goggles on. Remember that airsoft pellets travel at a very high speed of as much as 170 meters per second or more. It can bounce off a surface and come back to you anytime, so you need to protect your eyes all the time. Plus, if you are to use an automatic airsoft rifle, you can fire as much as hundreds of airsoft pellets in minutes. A direct hit in the eye with even just one pellet can result in blindness. Make sure to choose a pair that is made of high-resistant material like polycarbonate. Extra features may include fog-resistance, water-resistance, and scratch-resistance. Also, pick something that provides a facial-tight seal, is comfortable to wear, and has shatterproof lenses.
An airsoft helmet provides head protection. A pellet hit in the head, especially at close range, can also be quite dangerous. Choose a high-resistant helmet made of polycarbonate or Kevlar fibers. Make sure to pick a helmet that fits your head tight enough for it not to fall, yet comfortable to wear for a long time. Some helmet types have buckle straps, while others have slide-and-lock mechanism. Choose a type that you are most comfortable with.
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A ballistic vest, also called bulletproof vest, offers the player protection for the body. However, take note that a user cannot just use an airsoft ballistic vest in a serious situation where real gunfire is involved. There are different types of ballistic vests: a soft ballistic vest, a hard ballistic vest, and trauma pads. You can choose soft ballistic panels and trauma pads for an airsoft game.
Soft ballistic vests consist of aramid fibers or polyethylene fibers. They are light-weight, yet still sturdy enough to decrease the impact of airsoft pellets. Trauma pads have the same material as soft ballistic vests but are thinner. You may put them on top of the vest, but others also use them as it is. However, a user must take note that a trauma pad is just meant to decrease the trauma of the pellet. It is not strong enough to prevent bumps or bruises in case of hits.
For extra protection and comfort, a player may put an additional layer of padding and straps on their vests. Straps support better movement and stability to its user. Some straps feature added space and pockets where you can place airsoft accessories like gas canisters, spare ammunition, and extra batteries.
A pair of tactical gloves will help you enjoy airsoft and other outdoor games without bruising and scratching your hands. Choose gloves that have palm and backhand padding, are breathable, yet comfortable enough to handle your armors. Some brands even provide fingertip pads that allow you to use your smartphone without removing your gloves.
An Airsoft Reminder
Even though some may classify an airsoft gun as a toy replica, make sure to practice safety and precautions with its use as it can also pose harm and injury to its users and even just for spectators. As some airsoft guns are heavy, you may have a padded airsoft gun case for transportation. Also, make sure to clean your gun and its accessories before storage.
Also, it is very important to keep your airsoft gun away from children. If you are a parent, do not permit your teens to bring their airsoft gun to school. Always remind them to play only in designated airsoft areas. Also, if you opt to practice shooting within your backyard, make sure to observe safety precautions. You may construct a small area with nets around your targets to prevent any misfires.
In any extreme outdoor sports like airsoft, protective gear is necessary to keep you safe and injury-free. Common protective airsoft equipment includes safety goggles, helmet, ballistic vest, and tactical gloves. An airsoft player must also remember not to fire at anyone who does not have protective equipment.