Paintball has come a long way from the very first time it was used to simply mark timber and stray cattle. It has transitioned to a hobby that people played not to simply pass the time but to get a rush of adrenaline in their system. The game offered a friendlier and safer way to be engaged in a gunfight where bloodshed means paint all over their uniform and gaming area.
Paintball as a profession
As time passed by, more and more people started to play the sport and hoped to bring it to the next level. This is one of the reasons why the UK Paintball Sport Federation or UKPSF was created. It enabled an organized body to promote and advocate for the sport of paintball. This was the next step after hobbyist wanted more out of the game. It was founded in 1990 and aims to bridge the gap and concerns of paintball enthusiasts with concerned government agencies as well as local authorities. The objective is to have a sport that is as safe as possible but without taking out the thrill of the game. This is one of the main points as paintball transitions from a mere hobby to a professional sport – keep it safe but still enjoyable.
Rules and regulations
As UKPSF is responsible for regulating professional paintball, it developed the Code of Practice that is being observed by site and gaming operators. This is a standard meant to keep the game and participants safe. They also developed the Code of Conduct for the players themselves. This is especially for those with their own paintball equipment.
UKPSF also takes the lead in talking to various government agencies in addressing legal issues that would surround the professional game of paintball. National bodies like the Chief Police Officers regularly seek the cooperation of UKPSF when they are in need of advice about the game.
One other important role that the UK Paintball Sport Federation plays is to advocate recognition for the sport of paintball all over the UK. This entails the job of increasing awareness about the game as a solid sporting discipline. As this happens, more and more people get to know the game and would participate. This would put the game in the spotlight and could put the sport in other multi-sport events.
When it comes to professional sport, speedball is preferred over any other gameplay. This provides the safest environment for players with the inflatable layout. It also keeps the game thrilling with the fast-paced action. As such, the Speedball League was created to provide the venue for these high energy paintball games.
As paintball players transition from mere hobbyists to professional players, professional teams started to be formed and competed in various tournaments. These professional teams trained on a regular basis and solicited support from other people and businesses for sponsorships.
There are European professional paintball teams such as the Amsterdam Heat, Dornbirn Daltons which is an Austrian team playing different leagues all over Europe., Helsinki Cyclone led by paintball icon Sam Stark. There are also some former but defunct European teams such as the London Nexus, London Tigers, Manchester Kellys, Manchester Shockwave, and The Rat Pack based out in Wolverhampton U.K.