So your child has been asking (and asking) to get an Airsoft gun, and you are considering giving in. Since they are a great way to teach young children about gun safety, it is a decision that can benefit both you and your child. However, before you say yes, you need to learn all of the important things there are to know about Airsoft safety in order to be able to teach them proper technique from day one. Here are a few of the most important tips for being safe with Airsoft guns when it comes time to teach your kids how to use them.
Starting with the Basics
Getting an Airsoft gun, or any replica under any other name, is a purchase that needs to be made with a little bit of planning and prep work. As parents, you need to understand the ways that Airsoft guns are different from real guns, and what they shoot. Most Airsoft guns are exact replicas of the real thing, minus the bright orange tip of course. That is there to let others know that it is a replica gun, not the traditional kind. They offer the same dimensions and weight as a real gun, so they need to be treated with the same respect as a traditional gun. Also, the ammunition that Airsoft guns use comes in two sizes. You will have to check to see if the one you purchased takes 6mm plastic pellets or 8mm pellets. Most of them take the smaller size.
Protective Gear Is an Absolute Must
When it comes to Airsoft safety, the most important thing you can do is always be dressed appropriately. You need a few pieces of equipment to start, but there are quite a few that can make the entire experience better. You must make sure that both you and them are wearing at the very least, protective, shatterproof goggles, but ideally you should both have full face masks on. This way, your ears, cheeks, teeth, and eyes are all protected at the same time. You should also be sure to wear thick clothing in case you accidentally get hit with one. This will minimize the damage the pellet can do.
When it comes to other recommended pieces of equipment, you should try and have something to cover the top of your head, some knee and elbow pads if you are going to be crawling around on the ground, some solid shoes, and a pair of gloves. If the Airsoft gun you purchased happens to be one of the high-speed electric or gas models, you may want to also consider getting a little bit of body armor for you both as an extra level of protection.
Stay in Safe Places When Using Them
One of the first rules a parent must teach a child when it comes to Airsoft safety is how to properly handle the gun. It must never be carried or transferred around from place to place while loaded, and it should always be kept in a case. The gun should only ever be pointed at a target, no matter if it is loaded or not. If the target is close up, the speed should be 250-300 fps. This is also the ideal speed for someone who has never handled a weapon before. However, if you have been working with your child for a while and they are comfortable with the slower guns, you can then go up to the 400 fps option when shooting targets at long distances.
Airsoft Guns Can Be Great Teachers
Since they are replicas in size and weight of a real gun, they are a great tool when teaching early gun safety. The more comfortable your child is when handling this type of weapon, the easier time he or she will have when it comes time to switch up to the real thing. Just make sure your child understands that Airsoft guns are not toys. They need to be treated with respect, just as a real gun would require. While their force is typically not deadly, it can still be incredibly damaging.
Teaching your children how to properly handle an Airsoft gun is a great start in teaching overall gun safety. You need to make sure that you plan out getting the gun, and getting all of the safety equipment you need at the same time. You also need to practice what you preach. Do not tell your child to wear protective gear and then not wear it yourself. Your example is going to teach them that your words are not as important as your actions, so make sure you model the behavior that you expect them to follow.