Do Paintball Guns Have Recoil? Read to Learn Everything!!

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One of the main reason many paintball players enjoy playing the sport is because it has a realism feel to it like you’re in a real battle. But a lot of people seems interested in the recoil aspect of the gun – do paintball guns also include that feature of realism?

Do Paintball Guns Have Recoil?

The answer is yes and no. Paintball guns does have a very slight recoil even though weren’t designed to have recoil, but there are several factors that can create a kickback when you shoot. With that said, the recoil of a paintball gun isn’t nothing compared to a real gun or even a BB gun.

In this article we will be answering a few questions regarding paintball guns and recoil.

Does a Paintball Gun Kickback When You Shoot With It?

Does paintball guns have recoil

Most people who aren’t familiar with a paintball gun are usually concerned when it comes to the recoil for two reasons:

  1. They don’t want the paintball gun to hurt them when it kicks back.
  2. They are concern about the noise level if the gun, they don’t want it to sound like a real gun to avoid alarming the neighbors nearby or police officers.

Before you start getting too concerned regarding the paintball gun, you should know that it doesn’t feel, look or even sound like a real gun.

Whenever you dry fire a paintball gun (without any paintballs in it), you’ll definitely hear a hissing sound without experiencing any kickback. The sound is usually cause by the bolt and spring simply moving forward without anything in its path. Even though paintball guns with ammo in them sound a bit similar in most cases. They tends to hiss a bit louder due to the fact that it has projectile inside if it.

What this means is that a paintball gun that is not loaded doesn’t naturally have any recoil. If there is a small amount, you’ll have a hard time hearing it. A lot of people believe that airsoft guns have a more powerful kickback than paintball guns, which is hardly an issue as it is. However, there are several reasons why you might experience recoil when shooting with a paintball gun.

Each time you loaded your paintball gun and fire, you’ll notice a force that feels exactly like a kickback. This kickback normally happens because of the impact of the paintball being move forward. Also this force it what causes the paintball to leave the gun while the opposite force blows the gun back.

After all, the recoil isn’t that bad. Even with a few added problems, paintball guns doesn’t feel like a real gun even with the kickback mechanism. There’s no gun powder, no metal bullets and no mini explosions and shell being ejected from the paintball gun. This is one of the reasons why you don’t have to worry about experiencing any pain or bruising from recoil.

Many paintball players prefer to feel a bit of kick to their paintball gun when firing it. If you’re planning on taking part in mil-sim, then you will need some attachments for this.

When searching for attachments, you should definitely stay clear from third party services that offers recoil attachments. You should only do so through professional service to avoid internal damage to your paintball gun. If you’re an handyman, you might be able to get away with simply doing the installation yourself.

Other Factors That Can Make a Paintball Gun Have Recoil

Whether you’re just starting out in the sport or an experienced player, you’ve probably heard about CO2 cartridges. What these cartridges do is instantly release an high amount of pressure upon each shot in order to shoot the paintball much faster. CO2 are considered to be very popular due to the fact that they are extremely accurate because of their speed.

However, with these you will definitely notice a kickback when the pressure is released. Although, it’s not really powerful, CO2 paintball guns do have a slightly noticeable recoil. Many paintball players who use those types of marker find it not to have an huge impact on the way they play paintball.

I currently have a CO2 paintball gun at home and base on my experience with it I really enjoy the subtle feel when I press the trigger. It tends to add a bit of authenticity and always remind you that you are playing paintball.

Two other parts of the paintball gun that might add a little kick to the gun each time you shoot are the bolt and the spring. You should keep in mind that none of these will change the feeling too much in the end. With that said, they are worth mentioning because they are the primary parts that help to shoot the projectile from the gun.

Another thing you should know is that thick springs always have a lot more force behind because of the built-up tension. When this built-up tension is released, what usually happens is that the spring will vibrate and possible cause a tiny bit of recoil. The bolt work just the same. Instead of the tension from the spring building up, the bolt simply release tension by moving forward when a shot is taken.

With that being said, paintball guns doesn’t really have much recoil at the end of the day. Anything that shoots out a projectile with a spring, bolt and pressure release will have some form of recoil or kickback. If you have ever fired a Nerf gun before, you’ll also notice that even a Nerf gun has a small amount of recoil, but nobody ever really complains about pain, bruising or accuracy from the dart foams.

There are many paintball guns on the market that is made to look and feel exactly like a real gun. You should know that these are designed for military simulation paintball games. With these guns you can expect a bit more recoil. You also have the option to upgrade the spring and bolt to acquire more tension and pressure release. This will help to increase the recoil while also adding much more speed and accuracy at the same time.

Does Recoil Impact the Accuracy of a Paintball Gun?

If you have ever fired a real gun before then you should know that recoil definitely plays a role when it comes to the accuracy. After taking the first shot, it can be very difficult to keep up with the bounce if you’re not accustomed to the process. This might make you start to wonder if the recoil plays a role in guns accuracy.

You should know that the recoil or kickback doesn’t change much about shooting a paintball gun. As mentioned above, paintball guns don’t generally have recoil. What this means is that you don’t have to worry about your accuracy decreasing as you shoot.

If you’re still concerned about your gun accuracy, then the best thing you can do is opt for a electronic paintball gun rather than a CO2 powered paintball gun. Even though they require battery to operate, you don’t have to worry about spending extra money on CO2 when the cartridges runs out.


CO2 cartridges are much more likely to generate recoil than any other paintball gun on the market. If you want to experience the least amount of recoil, you should go with a gun powered by compressed air instead. Another thing is that springs, bolts and paintballs definitely change how much recoil you experience. Springs without a doubt increase recoil by a small amount, but they improve accuracy in exchange.

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