Does Airsoft Hurt? Places that Hurt the most when shot by Airsoft Guns

As a beginner, one of the questions that I always had on my mind  was: does airsoft hurt how much and would it be too much for me to reconsider starting. With the number of videos out there showing people being injured when playing airsoft, I would understand why this would be a very popular question among beginners in airsoft. I did some digging in a number of forums to see if there was a standard answer for this question and here is what I found.


Getting shot with an airsoft BB hurts. The amount of pain will depend on the speed at which the BB was flying and the weight of the particular BB that hit you. Airsoft is not lethal and within regulated fields, the injuries are not serious.

How Much Does Airsoft hurt

The pain from being shot by an airsoft BB  from up close on the bare skin is like being stung by a bee. If it’s shot from a far distance or on your clothes, it’s like being flicked by a finger.

In both instances the pain lasts for a few seconds. The pain would last a bit longer of the gun was shot from up close and when it penetrates the skin. However, this is unlikely in normal game play since there are rules that control the minimum distance you need to keep for you to shoot anyone.

Why does being shot airsoft gun hurt?

An Airsoft BB flies at an average of 300 feet per second usually expressed as 300FPS. The impact from this bb is hard enough to bruise the skin when it is shot from a close distance.

Which part of the body does getting shot by a BB hurt the most

The Eyes

The one place that you do not want to get hit by an Airsoft BB is the eyes. The impact from a direct hit in the eyes would be severe enough to cause permanent loss of eyesight. this is also one of the places that would had the most when you’re hit by a BB.

The Face

her face has more delicate skin than the other parts of your body and would experience higher levels of pain if hit by a bb.

The neck

this is a part of the body that is not normally protected my most players. you could experience high levels of pain especially you shot from a close distance and if a gun is above the regulated limits a hit on the neck can cause injury.

The groin

Now this is an obvious place that would definitely really hurt when hit.

Photo by  Kenny Mitchell

Which type of BB hurts the most

All types BB is will hurt when you are hit from up close. heavier BBs will hurt slightly more but with a bit of distance there’s no big difference in the amount of pain that would be inflicted.

Heavier BBs would have higher levels of momentum and would cover a larger surface area when hitting the skin period it is for this reason that they will be slightly more painful when they hit you compared to a smaller bb.

How does fps affect how much an airsoft gun hurt

The higher feet per second a BB is moving the more the pain it will inflict when it hits you. This means that when a gun is shooting higher than the recommended FPS it will likely injure the person it is aimed at.

This is the reason most official fields restrict how hot your gun shoots. The average field will only allow guns that shoots below 350 fps. Almost all fields will require that you test your airsoft gun using a chronograph to measure its FPS before you can begin playing.

These restrictions in fps help in reducing the number of injuries in the field by ensuring that even when you were hit in a sensitive spot you will not get injured.

Do Airsoft fields matter?

Airsoft fields really matter in terms of regulating how fast Airsoft guns shoot. it is for this reason that you need to carefully choose the airsoft field you’ll be playing at and know its rules before you go to play. Doing a bit of research on the airsoft field you are going to be playing at will help you know how seriously they take safety and know what restrictions they have on fps.

CQB VS field

CQB hurts way more than field play. This is because CQB has much smaller engagement distances and this means that you will be shot from close range much more than when you are out in the field.  Even though CQB requires lower fps guns than field, the pain is still more because of the close proximity with which you are going to get shot most of the time.

Which Airsoft gun hurts the most

Airsoft guns with higher fps and larger bb’s will hurt more than guns with the opposite configuration.

It is for this reason that sniper rifles will hurt more when shot in the same distance as AEG. this is because the average sniper rifle will fire at 600 fps compares to the average AEG that shoots at around 400 fps.

Can an airsoft  BB penetrate the skin

If an airsoft bb is shot from up close it is likely to penetrate the skin. This is, however, very unlikely in well-regulated fields. This is because the places on your body that would easily allow a baby to penetrate are usually covered up  these are the face the neck and the eyes.

Is Airsoft Lethal?

While being shot by an airsoft bb is not exactly a fun ordeal, it is very unlikely for a person to die because of being shot by an airsoft bb.

As a matter of fact, most airsoft injuries come from the hazards of running around and falling from high heights. It is more likely that you will get injured from these risks than from being shot by an airsoft gun.

Photo by   Kenny Mitchell

How to protect yourself from injury when playing airsoft

Don’t Brandish Airsoft Gun in Public:

Brandishing an airsoft gun in public is both illegal and dumb. Airsoft guns are almost identical to their more dangerous relatives and people will not be able to tell the difference between an airsoft gun and a real firearm. It is therefore VERY important to ensure that  never brandish your airsoft gun when you are in pubic places like roads, parks schools etc. One good way of safely storing away your airsoft gun is placing your airsoft gun in a gun case or protective bag. Below (Jump to Airsoft Gun Cases) is a list of gun cases at different price points that you can consider getting if you don’t already have a case.

Never point an airsoft gun at anyone outside of an airsoft Game:

Whether jokingly or intending to scare them, this is avery dangerous thing to do. If the person who you are pointing the gun at does not know that it is an airsoft gun, they may respond in a defensive way that may hurt you or them. It is especially unwise to point an airsoft gun at a police officer. This could potentially get you killed since the police officer will be acting in self defense.

Play in Official Airsoft Fields:

It is most advised that you play your airsoft games in official playing fields and not your back yard. The reason for this is because the field is usually located far from public places like parks and also far from residential areas. This will lower your chances of scaring people going about their day who might think that you are walking around with real firearms. If you do decide to play in your private residence, make sure that you inform your neighbors so that they don’t cause trouble for you with the law.

Eye protection must be worn:

both by the shooter and all other people around them. This will protect you from the danger of inadvertent fire before game play.

Always consider an airsoft gun as Loaded:

Keeping this assumption will keep your mind alert when handling your airsoft gun and when others are handling their guns around you. Most accidents happen when you get too relaxed when handling dangerous equipment.

All safeties should be on until you start your airsoft game.

You should ensure that everyone in your team maintains this habit and create ways of enforcing this habit. especially if you are taking breaks.

Keep your finger off the trigger:

Keep your finger off the trigger until you have your target in sight. When we are excited, we may get trigger happy and shoot at something we were not expecting.

Never shoot through the safe area.

The people in this area may not have the necessary safety equipment and you may injure them inadvertently.

Have Proper Footwear:

Airsoft fields are usually really rugged and one of the injuries you will need to protect yourself from are sprained ankles. You need to have boots that provide proper ankle protection. Hiking boots like this one provide good ankle protection and will protect you from injuries when you are running on top of rocks and bushes.

Always Point your Airsoft Gun Below Your Waist

This will protect you from hurting anyone if your gun does go off unintentionally. Keeping this habit whenever you handle your airsoft gun will prepare you for when your gun is actually loaded.

Airsoft Safety Gear

I will conclude this post with some of the safety gear that you need to have when playing Airsoft. The links below are of vetted airsoft products that will provide you with great protection when you are playing your game.

Airsoft Protective Vest

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Airsoft Protective vests help in guarding your chest from bbs that may be shot at close range.

Airsoft goggles

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The proper airsoft safety goggles should naturally exceed ANSI Z87.1 High Impact Requirements so as to keep the eyes safe even when high velocity bbs come at you from close range.

airsoft mask

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Airsoft Masks help protect your face from the sharp sting caused by bbs on you face.

Airsoft Protection Kit

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Padding on you knees will help you prevent scrapes on your knees when you hit the the ground if you trip on a branch or something.

Airsoft Helmets

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A good airsoft helmet will help you prevent serious injury if you trip and fall when on your airsoft game. Plus they also look cool when you have them on.

Airsoft Gloves

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Aside from looking really cool, Airsoft gloves help shield your hands from bbs which might also come from close range.

Airsoft Neck Protection

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A normal scarf would do when you want to protect your face but you but you may also want to have custom gear.

Airsoft Gun Cases

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Now a good airsoft gun case will protect you from a world of legal challenges and will also help you get your airsoft gun to and from an airsoft game without brandishing it  in public which is a crime and can get you in serious legal trouble.