Airsoft Action 07 - Mar 2012 - Page 73

Reasons to be cheerful: Jezz Blume on why we play airsoft YOUNG GUNS G N YOU 1 Pretty obvious, right? When else can you don 15kg of gear and camo, grab a gun with the latest accessories and engage another group of like-minded people? (Sorry paintballers, your guns are just not realistic enough.) MilSim can be extremely invigorating and is about as close to real combat as you can get without having to worry about that irksome ‘dying’ thing. Plus great friendships and camaraderie can come out of the sport. Airsoft can bring out the best in players, especially when they get that rush of adrenaline. It’s that same rush that comes right before an ambush is sprung, and that feeling in your chest when you’re stacked five deep and about to sweep and clear a four-bedroom house. It’s that rush when a burst of BBs zip past your ear. That rush is addictive, and if you get hooked it’s hard not to want more (but again it’s unlikely to kill you; if your partner’s giving you a hard time about how much time you spend airsofting remind them you could be addicted to crack or ballet, and to count their blessings). GUNS 2 It’s great exercise 3 Skill sharpening No one can argue against this and I’d say it’s especially true when playing outdoors. If you get deep in to the woods you’ll know how fields can turn in to muck and the only option is through. Usually with indoor games the only weight you might gain is a bit of dust here and there, but after 35m of murky field you’ll easily be dragging an extra 5-10lb of water and mud. Oh, and don’t forget those steep hills that everyone always fights over (Hamburger Hill at Ground Zero comes to mind). All that weight will really begin to tear you down after hours of constant climbing, crawling, standing and diving. Muscles that you forgot you had will begin to swell and ache. The powerbars will wear off, dehydration will kick in and the walk back to the respawn will be a welcome break. Who needs P90X when you can just play airsoft? “…Research has shown that videogame playing experience or playing a video game immediately before being tested can improve both reaction times and anticipation.” The same research also showed it can improve vision up to 20 per cent. That said, we all know airsoft and FPS videogames have a lot in common and that a large portion of airsofters are also avid gamers. So it’s only natural for videogame players to test their reaction time and vision in real scenarios. It’s funny, but I don’t know how many times I’ve thought to myself during a match: “This is just like a videogame…” Not only does airsoft work your reaction speed, vision and judgment, it is also a great way to improve teamwork, problem solving, land navigation, memory and both mental and physical discipline. One could consider 073