Safety Tips When Whitewater Rafting for the First Time

43So, you booked a whitewater rafting trip? Congratulations, you’re about to embark on the most exhilarating trip of a lifetime! I’m sure you did lots of research and found the best outfitter in your area, but now that the trip is getting closer, you may be getting a bit nervous. This is completely normal! Having a bit of anxiety and fear is a good thing when it comes to whitewater rafting, it means that you have respect for the river and the water. More accidents happen when carelessness and inattention come into play. So, let that fear and anxiety loom. Read this article and learn how to best prepare yourself for your first whitewater rafting trip.

Whether you booked a half day or a 6 day trip, you’ll likely get a safety talk at the boat ramp or the launch area, but here are some important tips to remember.

Wear your life-jacket: this may seem like a no brainer, but it’s really the simplest way to stay safe while whitewater rafting. In Idaho, a rafting outfitter is required to provide type V life-jackets or personal floatation devices to all guests going whitewater rafting. A type V life jacket refers to the foam density and pounds of floatation in the device, basically it’s the safest type of jacket you can wear! So, once you are near the river’s edge, be sure that your life jacket is on and it is properly fitted. In order for a life jacket to be properly fitted, it needs to fit snug. This will make sure that if you jump into the water, your life jacket doesn’t float up and over your head, it needs to stay down around your mid section to do its job correctly. Always wear your life jacket anytime you are near the water or in the raft.

Watch your step: be careful getting around when on the river bank and especially when getting in and out of the boat. The rocks along the river’s edge are very slippery, so take your time. “Low and slow” is a motto that river guides use often, walk slowly and crouch down low when the rocks or terrain are particularly treacherous.

Listen to your guide: this is especially important when it comes to a paddle boat, where each person has a paddle. The guide will be calling out commands such as right side, left side, etc. They do this in order to navigate safely through a rapid, avoid rocks and ensure you’re having the most fun possible!

Sit in a recliner: if you do happen to fall into the water and you’re nearing a rapid, you’ll want to try to get back to the boat as soon as possible. Sometimes it’s not always possible to get back in the boat, you may have to float down river for a bit before being pulled back into the boat. This is OK, remember you have a type V life jacket on that will help keep you afloat, all you need to do is sit back in a la-z-boy recliner position with your feet out in front of you and float down the river. This position helps to ensure that if there are rocks in the river, you’re able to bounce off of them with your feet, and not your head or tail bone. You’ll also have a clear view of what’s down river.

Breathe above water: another one of those rules that seems very intuitive and lacks needing to be mentioned, but it really does need to be mentioned. A lot of people will go through an initial shock that they’re in the water and a moment of panic, which can lead to erratic breathing. Take a big breath when your head is above water and hold it when it’s under water!

Pay attention to your surroundings: there are regional threats to watch out for and your guides will fill you in on the specifics, whether it’s poison ivy, poison oak, snakes, etc. Just be aware of the land and it’s threats.

Above all, have fun! A whitewater rafting trip is the best way to spend a hot summer afternoon, and if you’re lucky enough, you are planning a multi-day adventure and will be spending 3-6 days out on the river! Enjoy every minute, let the sun kiss your nose, revel in the big whitewater, leave your watch behind, dig your paddle in and live in the moment of being on the river!

Basics Of Paintball

seePaintball is a game that is normally comprised of two groups. Each needs to cooperate to finish a target. You utilize your paintball marker to dispense with restricting players to attain to this objective. There are two fundamental sorts of paintball games; Scenario and Tournament.

Situation paintball can occur in the forested areas or on urban battle fields. Competition paintball generally happens on a speedball field, with explode fortifications and the target is to wipe out the other group and “hang the banner.” Players will call these two sorts of paintball by diverse names, yet the purpose of this article isn’t to discuss the sorts of paintball play. There are a lot of articles about that. The purpose of this article is to discuss what paintball is past the playing field.

Paintball isn’t simply a diversion, interest or game. It is significantly more than that. It is the spot you can go to have a great time and unwind. Paintball has a novel environment. It gives individuals the opportunity to escape from their ordinary life and make all the anxiety and issues vanish for a couple of hours or a weekend. You meet new individuals, make companions, you giggle and have a fabulous time and get some activity.

For some it provides for them the center they require in life. It has bailed individuals stay out of inconvenience or it provides for them motivation to work at an occupation to have the capacity to bear the cost of playing paintball on the weekend. It gets you off the love seat, out of the workplace seat and gives you a chance to extend your legs. There is a spot for everybody on the paintball field. For some individuals it prompts much more. It will provide for them motivation to work out, to join a rec center and work at carrying on with a healthier life.

There are a wide range of streets for individuals to take in the game. Some like to simply play for entertainment only and some like to play on competition groups and vie for prizes. There are other individuals that like to travel, play 2-day situation occasions, meet new individuals and see new places. What you need to do with paintball is all up to you. You can play a couple times each year, a couple times each month or consistently. You can join groups, make groups with your companions or simply appear to a field and discover individuals to play with. On the off chance that you are considering getting into the game, recall there is a great deal all the more excessively it, than simply circling on a field with a marker loaded with paintballs. It can be an experience and an approach to make memories that you will have the capacity to discuss for a considerable length of time to come.

For those of us who have been included in the game for a long time, we need to recall that these distinctions are what makes paintball extraordinary from different games, side interests or recreations out there. “You really get to live as uproarious as you need” – Matty Marshall. As players, we have to verify that each rental and each new player who strolls onto a field leaves with a grin all over. As a paintball group, we have to work with the new individuals coming into the game and verify they have the same extraordinary time that we all did when we initially played. In the event that we can cooperate, we can verify this diversion proceeds for a long time and will be around for future eras to appreciate.

How To Start A Winning Tournament Paintball Team

h5If you have dreams of being a professional paintball player, you will never get their on your own. This requires competing in big, professional tournaments and this can only be accomplished as a sports team. The fastest and easiest route is to get into an already speeding sports car and get on someone else’s team. The more difficult path (however ultimately more rewarding) is to start your own. The amount of work you put into making the team is incomparable to the amount of work required to actually get the team going in the right direction. The first step is to establish yourself as a solid player. You don’t need to be the most experienced or have the most expensive gear, but you should show other players you are easy to work with and is totally dependable. Show this to people during actual games by protecting other player’s backs and working hard to help achieve the game’s mission. Show other players how committed and ready you are to play and devote time to bettering your skills.

Putting out much effort like this will attract others who have the same desires as you and it shouldn’t be hard finding people who are willing to work. While working on becoming a better paintball athlete, keep your radar open for observing other players who have the same mindset and qualities that will benefit your team. In tournament style paintball, players hold certain positions on the field, so you will need to look for people who will fill them all for a complete team. The best teams are made of players who are adept at multiple areas on the field rather than just their own position. This will give you an automatic back up system just in case one of your players it out. Besides just filling spots on the field however, look for certain traits in players that will make them easy to work with and help propel your team to victories. For example, choose players who are aggressive on the field and always moving forward. People that are too hesitant and scared to do anything will be dead weight on your team. On the other hand, try to find people who are also smart with their movement and don’t just kamikaze rush out in every situation.

Another big asset to your team will be to have players who don’t mind working hard in practice. Getting good as a team requires much practice as a team. If you have members who don’t enjoy practicing or can’t make it very often, it will be hard to get better and can be distracting to other team mates. This makes a good reason to put a team together with more players than what you actually need. If you’re putting together a 5-man team, don’t stop recruiting after your fifth player; continue searching until you have eight. This way you have back up players in case something happens and full enough practices to get something done. While there are many drills and exercises that can be done with just a couple guys, practicing with your full team is important for perfecting certain plays and strategies. It’s also important you choose team mates who are not afraid to work hard, practicing every drill over and over again until they have it down. Your team will only be as strong as its weakest link, so allowing lazy people in will guarantee holes in your game.

Perhaps one of the most important traits to look for in a team mate when putting together a winning roster is the ability to take criticism and also give constructive feedback. While practicing, other team mates will be watching you and you will get a lot better a lot faster if they can evaluate your performance and give you feedback on ways you might do better. The player who can take this information and use it to improve rather than seeing it as an insult will be the easiest to work with and provide the most forward growth for the team. These qualities are not easy to find and it is rare you will find people with all of them, but try to search for people’s strengths as they would relate to your team’s performance (both on and off the field) for winning competitions. Most of these characteristics can be figured out by playing with them on the field, but take your time studying certain players to make sure they fit what you’re looking for before announcing an open spot on your team. Maybe even have them try out so you can evaluate them in certain situations.

Once you’ve hand-picked your players, you will need a team captain. While this is often the person who put the team together however doesn’t have to be. Decide within your ranks who wants to take on the job but realize he will be the heart and soul of the team. The captain is in charge of working on plays, reviewing field layouts, developing drills, contacting potential sponsors and coordinating practices and training events. He will organize and run practices and also find out about tournaments so he can set the team’s schedule. Team members should be willing to handle tasks delegated from the captain to ease some of his workload. If you have a team that’s big enough, you can elect other ‘offices’ like a treasurer or secretary who can handle other tasks like taking care of the finances and setting up travel plans. Decide if you’re going to have monthly dues or just split up costs equally as they occur, however a plan on how to handle this aspect is important as many partnerships have dissolved because of rifts over finances. Without sponsors, travel, entry fees, equipment, food and the regular expenses of paint will have to be paid for and an intelligent plan from the beginning will offset most concerns.

Paintball Gun Air Tank Safety Tips

321dFor powering a paintball marker, you can choose between CO2 or high pressure air, with most players choosing CO2 as these are the cheapest tanks to purchase. While most paintball guns can use either CO2 or compressed air, the more expensive tournament style markers must use high pressure air as CO2 can damage these guns. While ultimately cheaper, CO2 can be hard on any paintball gun however due to its nature. Compared to compressed air, CO2 is more volatile as it converts from gas to liquid (and vice versa) as its used in little spurts each time you pull the trigger of your gun. CO2 is also greatly affected by temperature changes. A properly filled C02 tank will have an internal pressure of about 850 pounds per square inch (psi) in 70 degree (F) temperatures. A temperature increase of one degree will cause the pressure in your tank to rise by 11 psi.

This means the temperature of your playing environment or storage area can affect how your marker will perform with CO2. If you’re playing in an environment of about 70 degrees, when the hot afternoon temperature comes your tank pressure can rise 400+ psi fairly quickly. Without a regulator, this will often cause your gun to shoot hot, possibly even dangerously high. In most cases, CO2 tanks will not overheat as long as they’re in use. Leaving them in the hot sun or in your car while you take lunch during a summer day is often how this happens. If a CO2 tank does overheat, it has a special mechanism (called a ‘burst disc’) that will keep it from causing a dangerous explosion.

The burst disc is a safety pressure relief valve that will rupture if a CO2 tank builds up too much pressure from getting too hot. The result is a spray of CO2 vapor that may cause the tank to spin around a bit until enough pressure is released. If this happens, the best thing to do is get away from it and wait for it to empty or at least stop making hissing noises; after which, the tank is safe to handle again. At this point, you can take the tank to any airsmith at a paintball shop or commercial air tank supply company. The burst disk can be replaced and he can set it to the proper torque, however this is something a professional airsmith should handle to make sure it’s done correctly. If you can’t find a professional airsmith, it may be easier to simply purchase a brand new CO2 tank as they are cheap and easy to find.

Compressed air is the other most common power source used for paintball guns. Compressed air tanks are more expensive than CO2, however their performance is much more consistent. They have built in regulators which reduce the pressure of air fed to the paintball gun to keep it below 800 psi. Most high pressure air tanks for paintball markers range from 3,000 to 5,000psi. When using high pressure air tanks, it’s important to read and follow all of the manufacturer’s instructions regarding usage and storage. Unlike CO2, compressed air is not as sensitive to temperature gradients; this is the main reason why they perform more consistently on the paintball field and are not as volatile to heat. If the burst disk ruptures or a component leaks on a compressed air system, follow the same protocol as with the damaged CO2 tank. The best thing to do is get away from it and wait for it to drain before taking it to a professional for inspection/repair. The leaking high pressure air from a broken gauge can cause serious injury by injecting air under the skin if a body part is held next to it.

All compact CO2 and high pressure air tanks used for paintball guns have a limited life span. CO2 and air tanks have an expiration date stamped on them, usually with 3 to 5 years from the time of purchase. After that the tanks must be tested and re-certified by a hydrostatic testing facility before they are deemed safe for further use. Unfortunately, the cost of testing/re-certification generally exceeds the cost of a new tank, so most players just opt to buy a new one. It is wise to regularly inspect your air tanks before each time you play. Check for leaks, dents, damages or other questionable signs of wear. Also check the tank’s valve or regulator to be sure it isn’t loose in the tank. Never remove or try to install the CO2 tank valves; this should only be done by a professional that has been trained in maintaining high pressure compressed gas equipment. As a general rule, if your tank springs a leak, get away from it until it empties; then take it to a professional for repair or simply buy a new one. If you are ever in doubt, don’t hesitate to contact the manufacturer or distributor of the product for advice.