Does Paintball Hurt? If Yes then how much?

When you are invited to play Paintball for the first time; The first question arising into your mind is “Does Paintball Hurt?” Your concern for the pain is genuine like any other normal person’s. And the answer to this question is very simple, YES.

You have never experienced these hits firsthand. So, being a paintball player myself, I will share my rich experience with you so that you know what you are up against.

You may be wondering that if paintball is such a dangerous game then why do lots of people go to play this game? Why the paintball fields are full on every weekend with tons of people going there? Let me guide you through.

During the game of paintball, your only objective is to shoot while not getting shot

But, this is an ideal scenario. Your opponents come with the same intent. The only thing common between both of you is this idea. So, be prepared in advance that you will get many hits on the field. But the story does not end here. Rather, this is where the fun begins.

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How much does Paintball hurt ?

Paintball Injury
Paintball Injury

At this time, you should be asking the right question to yourself. How much does paintball hurt?

Let me tell you, everybody has got a varying threshold and tolerance towards pain. Some are born tough and some are bruised very easily. It is simply impossible to quantify the level or degree of pain.

Yeah, we cannot quantify pain, but at least we can get prepared for it. And, the solution to this problem depends upon numerous factors. If we just go through them one by one, we will be quite comfortable and confident before our maiden game.

During paintball, the level of pain depends upon four major factors

Level of Pain during Paintball

1. Type of Gun

Normally, the paintball gun or paintball pistol is set at a velocity of 260-280 FPS. Almost, all paintball fields have restricted their paintball guns to this level to minimize the risk of injury to players. So, this means that you are not going to get a lot of pain or injuries if you are hit with this speed of paintballs. Although, this will vary depending upon the other factors as well which I will discuss in the subsequent paragraphs.

2. Distance of Shot

There is a rule in Paintball that you should not hit the opponent if he is within 20 Ft of you. Because, if you are hit at such a close distance, surely you will get hurt and you do not want this.

Therefore, I urge you to show some sportsmanship in the field and do not hit an opponent who is at a close distance. As you do not want to get hit at a closer range. So, a simple rule is

 “Never shoot within closer range and surrender immediately once you find yourself in a compromised situation”.  

Now, we have seen the two major factors which mainly define the level of pain while playing paintball. So, let us see this from some other angle. Let’s support our claim with some Scientific Data. However, if you are not into numbers and you do not want to bother you with graphs and statistics then just take our word for it. Else, you may like to look at this supporting data.

Drop in velocity of paintball and lesser chances of injury to paintballers

If you look at the red line on the graph then you can see that a Paintball that is fired out of the barrel at a speed of 280 FPS will drop its speed to 60 FPS just after 4.45 seconds after covering a distance of 300 Ft. The speed of paintball pellet will drop to its half just after covering 100 Ft in air and this is a tremendous drop.

 “More far you are from your opponent, more safe you are”.  

There are other factors as well but your distance from your opponent is one of the governing factors. It will dictate that how much you will feel hurt during the paintball.

3. Where you are Hit

The main factor in determining the pain is “Where you are hit”.

If you are hit directly on your exposed body parts, you will feel pain and get bruises. But if you are hit on your shoes or helmet, you will not feel even an iota of pain.  Therefore, it is impossible to tell you the exact amount of pain that you might endure when getting splashed by your rival.

But from our experience, we concluded that no matter how tolerant you are towards pain, you will feel a slightly little ting when shot.

4. Protective Gear

No field will allow you to play without protective gear. This is for your own safety. Main protective gear includes Paintball Helmets and Gloves. If you are wearing a minimum of these two, rest assured that you will not get a lot of pain even if you are hit. So, never compromise on quality protective gear.

If you cannot afford a good paintball mask then you should opt for a budget paintball mask or even go for a rented one. It will affect your performance but it will ensure your safety. Similarly, specially designed paintball pants are a preferred choice over normal jeans as they can easily withstand the force exerted by the pellets from a high-quality paintball hopper.

Does Paintball Hurt?

You will feel pain once you are shot in the game. But, don’t worry too much. It’s completely bearable. Yeah, the intensity may vary but still, it is manageable. 

The basic rule applies here as well. Make sure that you are not hit at an unexposed body part. If you can achieve this then you are good to go right away against your opponents. 

Sometimes, you may get a welt or bruises, despite protective clothing. This may happen if you are too close to your opponent. So, remember that if you are too close and you don’t have any exit. Then, it is better to live for a fight some other day. Exercise the option of surrender. Raise both of your arms and yell at the top of your voice for surrender. Someday, this trick will save you from injuries. 

How to reduce the pain during Paintball?

For any person to limit the pain, they should wear more layers of thin clothing so that they may not feel more pain. But, do not overdo it. As this game will require a lot of exertion from you. So, after a while, you will feel sweaty and warmed up. If you warm up during the game you can always take the upper layers off. This is a preferred option because it can protect the open flesh from shots.

You can wear gloves, baggy clothes, paintball pants, and tracksuits to keep every part of your body protected. Baggy clothes help you to layer up inside therefore they along with the gear minimize the pain from those speedy shots because these layers absorb most of the pressure.

Can paintball hurt children more?

Paintball can hurt children

Paintball is a great outdoor activity for all age groups from being a child to an adult, but as for a child, no kid under the age of 12 is allowed to play the game.

This age rule varies in different states but one thing is the same in all the states that safety has to be ensured. Some states allow children to play paintball but the arrangements for children are different from that of the adults.

Children have different sets of rules for safety reasons such as the gun pressure being further reduced to limit the speed. All the kids are placed with their age groups thus it gives them an equal chance to enjoy the game just like adults. Children play under direct supervision with all the protective equipment for their safety. They wear a special paintball mask for kids to ensure their safety.


Let’s build an ideal scenario to see for ourselves that “Does paintball hurt?”

So, on any given day, you are hit from a distance of 50 Ft with an average gun velocity of 270 FPS with all your protective gear put on. I can assure you that in the heat of the game, you will feel nothing. You will keep on playing the game without any notice.

On the contrary, if you are hit at a closer range on your open body part. Rest assured, you are going home with a souvenir on your body. So, avoid this at any cost.

Paintball is a very safe game with a given set of rules. Play by abiding by these, and have a safe game without any fear of pain.

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