Airsoft beginner tip #1: Check the laws to find out how old you have to be in order to play.
Airsoft beginner tip #2: Take a good pair of boots: In Airsoft you run a lot forward an backwards which is a lot of opportunity for your ankles. I recommend take something with really good ankle support that will help protect your ankles on the field. I found some real steel boots on Amazon here.
Airsoft beginner tip #3: Learn how to hold your gun: Most beginner Airsofters (even advanced players) have seen it in films on how to hold their gun. And they interpret it wrong. Most of you use chicken wing holding. This is when you when you hold your elbows out to the side or holding their gun by their magazine. Instead of posing in a chicken wing tuck your elbows right into your body. That will make your profile a lot smaller on the side. That way you have a better cover and concealment.
Why not holding your gun at your magazine? Well you make it yourself harder to move with your barrel. Instead, you should grip your gun at the front to move a lot easier. If you magazine is a bit lose take some safety tape and wrap it around the magazine where it goes in the gun. That way it’s much less lose.
Airsoft beginner tip #4: Use your cover correctly: When getting shot, you probably didn’t take the right cover or you wasn’t at arms length between cover. That gives you less freedom to move and to hold your gun up.
Second reason, give yourself that kind of peripheral vision so you can scan the environment and get a much better sense of you battlefield awareness. So stand back a couple of feet from cover and you benefit way more from that cover.
Airsoft beginner tip #5: Keep a prone position: This is a well known position in competitive shooting. The prone position is the position of a shooter lying face down on the ground. It is considered the easiest and most accurate position as the ground provides extra stability.(1) When you going prone the opponent is almost not able to hit you. The reason for that is the way an Airsoft gun works. The Hop-up imparts a backspin and pushes a BB upwards while gravity pushes the BB downwards. This gives the BB a flat trajectory. But if you shoot at an angle, like downwards, the gravity does not have the same effect. So BB’s are more likely to fly right over you instead of hitting you .
Airsoft beginner tip #6: Unload your magazines: Magazines have a little spring that pushes BB’s into your gun. If you leave the BB’s in there the spring stays compressed. The next time you use your gun you will find out that the spring doesn’t have the same tension. It’s much harder for those magazines to get the BB’s into your gun. You can simply eject the BB’s and put them into a bag or something and use them again later.
Airsoft beginner tip #7: Listen to the game brief before a game: This is the most asked question before a game starts: “What is the objective”? Make sure that you are on time so that you don’t have to ask such questions. That is annoying and not necessary.
Airsoft beginner tip #8: Find a local field that offers rentals: This is especially important when you go for the first time to a skirmish. You don’t want to buy all kinds of stuff for your first skirmish. Try different guns, talk to other Airsofters and find out what you really want.
Airsoft beginner tip #9: Connect with a local team: Two important reasons to play Airsoft is having fun and because you like games/guns. Am I right? Finding a local team means more fun. Besides that, they might be willing to lend you gear to try out. Well, that’s important because you can try different gear and find out what fits you most. You can also ask other Airsofters for advice and tips.
Airsoft beginner tip #10: Let your tool kit grow your experience level: There are different gun styles out there on the market. You might know them like an M4, DMR, Sniper, AK, Pistol etc. When you just started looking for an M4 or AK style rifle begin your search here: Follow this link for the best (beginner) gun
Airsoft beginner tip #11: Go for ANSI rated goggles: Especially when they are fully sealed. Safety glasses usually have small gaps around the lenses that can make your eyes vulnerable. Many fields require ANSI rated and fully sealed goggles for being allowed to play. Valken Tactical has a great ANSI rated Goggles.
Airsoft beginner tip #12: Consider full face masks: It’s not necessary but I highly recommend to protect your teeth and mouth. You will not be the first one who lost a tooth or got an injury on his face. Imagine a BB with a speed of 350 FPS that hit’s your ear… This face mask and goggle set has many good reviews on Amazon.
Airsoft beginner tip #13: Check the fields velocity guidelines: Maybe this is more a parents thing…Anyway, if you are a new player or sending your children to an Airsoft field for the first time, make sure that the field has clear velocity guidelines in place. Velocity is also called FPS (feet per second) and means the speed of the BB that leaves the barrel.
Airsoft beginner tip #14: Engagement distance rule: Every field should has engagement distance rules. Mostly they vary from field to field. The minimum engagement distance should be 10 feet or further away.
Airsoft beginner tip #15: Use a Shemagh to protect your neck: Does not underestimate the speed of a BB. A shemagh could literally break the speed of a BB. It also give you extra protection for being shot from the side.
Airsoft beginner tip #16: Thick clothes overall: These can help protect you from hits to your body, legs and arms. Use a long sleeve to have your arms covered and a jeans to cover your legs. Of course you can go for a combat shirt or a tactical pants but this is not necessary for the beginner.
Airsoft beginner tip #17: Proper footwear: When you plan to play outdoor (on the field) you definitely want to wear footwear that provides a lot of protection for your feet and ankles. The best way is to go for boots that wrap around your ankles and has thicker sole. You can either choose military or work boots.
Airsoft beginner tip #18: Never brandish your Airsoft replica in public: It’s illegal and it’s also very dangerous. Airsoft replica’s are in many cases indistinguishable from real firearms. Law enforcements would definitely consider an Airsoft replica as a real firearm when brandishing in public. Several situations in the past have lead to life threatening situations. So never, never take your Airsoft replica in public.
Airsoft beginner tip #19: Use a bag/case for transporting: When you’re going to a skirmish or to a dealer your Airsoft replica needs to be secured in a gun bag or case with a locker. When it’s in a bag or case it has to be unloaded. Put you BB’s and magazine in a separate bag so that casual misuse is prevented. This bag is recommended an a must have according many other Airsofters.
Airsoft beginner tip #20: FPS guidelines: As you know the FPS limits on outdoor and indoor differs a bit. If you are shooting indoors, in general you shouldn’t go above 350 FPS. Outdoors is slightly higher and you probably won’t go above 400-450 FPS on most fields. If using a sniper, 500 FPS is plenty and will hurt most of your opponents. Just be decent about it.
Airsoft beginner tip #21: Know your gun from the outside as well as the inside: If something gets loose or breaks you should be able to fix your gun. You need to know how to take it apart and put it together. If something simple breaks you’d be glad that you know how to fix it.
Airsoft beginner tip #22: Have a solid tactical vest: Be sure that everything you carry with you is tied down so you don’t lose anything. For example use a pouch, quick release magazine holders an putting your pistol on a lanyard. We recommend a vest where you can put extra pouches on. Follow this link for a vest review.
Airsoft beginner tip #23: Hydration bladder cleaning: When you ever have bought a hydra pack you maybe had the experience of that plastic taste. Of course that was disgusting. So what to do about it? Check out the video below!
Airsoft beginner tip #24: Take a secondary with you: Imagine that you are on the field and your gun got a malfunction. What do you do? The best second option you get is to have a second primary. Imagine again that you only have this ultimate best beginner gun (actually it is overall one of the best guns). What is something gets loose? Or break? I would go for a second primary rifle: The JG M4 RIS System for example. Then you don’t being stuck with your pistol the whole day. As long as you don’t take part in long distance battles…
Airsoft beginner tip #25: Take a small toolkit with you: For example take a knife, Multi-tool, a set of allenwrench and some string with you. Don’t leave them in the safe zone but keep some small amount with you.
Airsoft beginner tip #26: High capacity magazines instead of mid capacity magazines? Low cap magazines like to have more realism and feed better. High capacity magazines are more noisy. There are many different reasons to use different magazines. Some sites even don’t allow high capacity magazines.
Airsoft beginner tip #27: Hand protection is key: Holding your Airsoft replica with an injured hand is not the best foundation for accurate shooting. Both in woodland an CQB play you will need hand protection. During a mission you will have to climb over obstacles, go prone, get some vegetation out of the way…Your hands are also going to take definitely some brutal hits from your opponent that is trying to take you out. What kind of gloves? Choose one with rubber that goes all the way up the finger length and your knuckles. On Airsoft Station these handgloves from Freetoo has many 5 star reviews.
Airsoft beginner tip #28: Don’t buy cheap low quality BB’s: Low quality BB can damage your gun instantly. Why? Because they will stuck in your barrel. Make sure your BB’s are nicely polished and perfect white. You can do that by checking them immediately after buying. Do you find BB’s with inconsistent surface? Probably there is a lack of control. Then use them only in you secondary or second primary. Your less expensive Airsoft replica.
Airsoft beginner tip #29: Playing in your backyard: We did some practice in our backyard before we actually decided to play Airsoft. That was not with the intention to learn Airsoft but more because we liked it. And we want to become better in shooting. However, playing in the backyard can cause nuisance unintentionally when you have neighbors living close to you backyard. Some neighbors or passerby could think that you play with real guns! Inform your neighbors before you play. If you live nearby the street I recommend to go to the field.
Airsoft beginner tip #30: Find good places to go: To learn more about Airsoft and find great fields check this site. This site will list all known Airsoft fields, stores and teams. Find your place and then everything you should know about a local field is there. In this article I mentioned 2 other websites for European players.
Airsoft beginner tip #31: Rent some gear before buying: On your first skirmish we recommend to rent some gear. Many fields provide this option to you. Instead of buying what you don’t want, first try different gear and talk to other Airsofters. You got a better understanding of what you actually want.
Airsoft beginner tip #32: Check local rules for gun possession: Many countries has a centralized organization which is competent to give you a license which says that you are allowed to transport a gun to a local field and that you are playing Airsoft. In de United States and Canada you don’t need a license to possess or use.
Airsoft beginner tip #33: Your age does matter: The age of 12 or above is a commonly accepted as a minimal age requirement at most places. If you want to be sure check the field rules.
Airsoft beginner tip #34: Practice shooting offhand: This has nothing to do with being right handed or left handed. It’s more about tactics. We are mostly right handed. So the opponent knows where you are likely to pop out from a building because it’s a natural thing to do for most right handed Airsofters. So if you are right handed then most people are going to pop out at the left side of the building if you are in front of them.
Airsoft beginner tip #35: Communicating on the field: Let your teammates know about what you see and what you’re planning to do. Use radio’s or headsets to communicate with each other. Give as much information you can about the enemy. If your teammate has a better angle to shoot the enemy, why wouldn’t you yell to your teammates “hey there is an enemy in front of you, can you take him out?
Airsoft beginner tip #36: Learn to shoot from different angles: Most Airsofters expect you to pop out chest height from a window. So when showing up you do it mostly standing on your feet or kneeling instead of pop out low around the corner or tuck under a car. This way you’re able to surprise your opponent instead of doing what your opponent is expecting. Straight on angle is not always the best. Sometimes shooting from a low angle is better.
Airsoft beginner tip #37: Tactic to take over a building: Shoot the structure as much as you can. Use full auto on the wall and even try to hit the person. Use that bunch of noise to get a better position near the building or even come close enough to take out the enemy. The person inside the building would not even think about it to pop their head out…
Airsoft beginner tip #38: Understand were your gear is: On the field you won’t have to think where you put your gear. If you wearing a Tactical Vest you should intuitively know where you put your magazines and how to transitioning to secondaries; you secondary gun and other magazines.
Airsoft beginner tip #39: Take your hits: IF you begin hesitating as to whether it was a hit or not, take your hit anyway. Don’t cheat. If you take your hits quite often that will mean to other people that you are a really excellent player and it really makes their day.
Airsoft beginner tip #40: Ask someone to look at their gun: When you’re on the field and see someone with a cool gun ask nicely if you may hold their gun. It lets you get a quick feel for the gun. Most Airsofters are even willing to give you some tips on which gun to get. Don’t be afraid to ask because Airsofters lover their gun to they want to show off their gun.
Airsoft beginner tip #41: Bring a speedloader with you: You don’t want to be that Airsoft guy that is the last on the field because you were busy trying to find one to load your magazines. The speedloader from Valken seem a very good one.
Airsoft beginner tip #42: Tail your gear for what you’re doing: You have to adjust your load out to the circumstances you are in. When playing CQB you would probably wear different gear / a different load out than on the field or in milsim. With a 10 to 15 minute skirmish match in CQB you would probably go with a light load out. A milsim requires other supplies of course.
Airsoft beginner tip #43: Go at least for some basic camouflage: Use some basic techniques to apply camouflage and concealment techniques. Start for example with face painting, camouflage your head and your Airsoft replica. After these basic camouflage you can focus on some gear like a boonie, mesh mask, gloves, combat uniform and balaclava. For an in-depth camouflage and concealment guide follow this link to my article about camouflage and concealment techniques.
Airsoft beginner tip #44: Don’t buy any low grade BB’s: These BB’s can cause real damage to your Airsoft gun. Airsoft BB’s that are not spherical can cause jam or get stuck in the barrel. They will also damage your gearbox components when their break or scatter inside. Instead of these low grade BB’s I recommend high quality BB’s like Elite Force or Valken Tactical.
Airsoft beginner tip #45 Don’t reuse BB’s: After using BB’s you should always discard them or allow them to biodegrade. The reuse of BB’s can seriously damage your Airsoft replica. Those BB’s will jam up your barrel and gearbox because they’re not perfectly spherical anymore.
Airsoft beginner tip #46 Take time to adjust your Hop-Up: Your Hop-up plays an important role on how accurate you be with your gun. If you experiment with BB weight, go spent some time on adjusting your Hop-up to get it right.
Airsoft beginner tip #47 Start with 0.20-0.25 gram BB weight: For the most basic starter replica I would recommend to start with 0.20 gram BB’s. From that point you can experiment with heavier BB’s and adjust your Hop-Up at the same time. For CQB play I definitely would start with 0.20 gram, outdoors you probably need 0.25 gram because of the elements. But again start with 0.20 and work your way up from that point.
A final word
I couldn’t came up with more tips for you Airsofters. Maybe you have some great tips that are not mentioned here in this article? Leave your suggestion in the comments below. I will adjust this article and mention your name! Thank you.
Update January 2019: Check out our latest recommendations! Click here to go to our recommendations page!
sources: (1). https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Prone_position