Paintball is a recreational sport that can be played with teams or individuals. It involves shooting a paint-filled pellet at other players in order to eliminate them from play. There are some rules when playing paintball, but for the most part it’s up to the players to decide what is allowable and what is not. Basic safety gear and various paintball guns are the equipment needed to play this sport.
The most important piece of equipment in paintball is the paintball gun, which fires paint balls with burst of carbon dioxide. Other pieces of equipment include masks, protective gear for the body, gloves and special vehicles called paintball tanks.
Paintball can be played in just about any large space with plenty of cover, such as the woods. More organized or urban play happens in paintball parks, which can have various themes or simply be a large field with inflatable obstacles for players to hide behind.
Paintball tournaments have been played ever since the early 1980s. They were usually played in natural, wooded areas until the late 1990s, when fields with artificial bunkers became the standard for tournament play.
Organized paintball is played between two teams, each containing 3, 5, or 7 players, depending on the game. Teams often compete based on various leagues they are in, which can be professional, semi-professional, or regional.
Over 5 million people in the United States play paintball regularly, yet many people believe the game to be very unsafe. However, with all the safety gear available it is actually one of the safest sports, according to the National Injury Information Clearinghouse of the U. S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, with less than 1 injury per 1000 players.