Here are the top ten things everyone should know about paintball:
1. the sport was created in the early 80s and has been conducted as a commercial operation since 1982.
2. paintball is legal in all fifty states and US possessions and territories (though local ordinances may affect the ownership, use and sale of paintball gear) and is played in virtually every country in the world
3. paintball is considered to be a very safe physical activity – so long as the proper safety equipment is used and minimal safety regulations are followed. The use of PAINTBALL APPROVED eye and head protection is MANDATORY everywhere the game is played
4. the projectiles used (paintballs) are made entirely out of biodegradeable, non-toxic materials (starch, fish oils, gelatin, food coloring); the gasses used to shoot paintballs are naturally occurring gasses (nitrogen, carbon dioxide) that will not ignite or “explode”. The gasses used are under pressure (in some cases very high pressure – up to 4500 pounds per square inch) and must be handled properly
5. paintball rates of fire and velocities are regulated for safety. Paintball guns may not fire more than 12 balls per second (the average is far less than that) and may not exit the barrel traveling more than 300 feet per second (they start slowing down immediately).
6. the insurance mandated minimal age for participating in commercial paintball games is ten years old in the United States. Local laws may affect this.
7. the ‘fill’ inside a paintball is considered to be “non-staining”, and most fills are (warm water and soap, laundry detergent, etc., will clean “paint” off of most any surface). However, some materials (stucco, expensive carpet fibers, paint finishes) can be permanently stained by some paintball fills.
8. you do not need to own any paintball gear to play paintball games. Most commercial operations also rent equipment for play. Paintball is very much a “consumers” hobby. Participants can modify their play and purchase their equipment in a manner that will meet virtually any budget.
9. anyone can play and paintball is very accommodating to those with physical limitations, since the equipment used is a great “leveler”
10. on any given weekend, several million people are playing paintball, all around the world.