Many young boys love to play with action toys and nothing can really beat pretend play shooting activities. And while there are a variety of toy shooters in the market today nothing can come close to the superb ability of Nerf guns to stimulate and actually encourage children’s vivid imaginations. With its very space-age looking and colorful designs, each Nerf blaster is designed with only one thing in mind: bring pure fun and joy to anyone who is using it in a variety of role-playing activities. However, Nerf guns can still be quite dangerous if kids don’t know how to use it properly. Here are some things you can do to teach your child how to play safely with Nerf guns.
Always Observe Precautionary Measures
While Nerf guns and their “ammunitions” are relatively safe, it is always better to be particularly cautious. The Nerf darts are especially built with foam tips so when they hit the body, it will not really hurt. Unfortunately, there are some parts of the body that are particularly sensitive to pressure. For instance, the eyes are particularly vulnerable to injuries even if it were only a small particle of dust. As such, the following precautionary measures should always be adhered to every time your kid tries out playing with his or her Nerf gun.
- Always wear safety glasses or even goggles to protect the eyes. At any rate, this should help prevent eye injuries secondary to accidents.
- Teach children never to aim or shoot other kids in the eyes as this can be damaging to the structure and function of this body part.
- Let children wear protective pads on their elbows and knees. As much as possible, let them wear gloves as well. While these are not really intended to protect these body parts from getting hit by Nerf darts, these are used for protecting the body from falls. Many kids get so immersed in the action that they tend to roll, crawl, and even dive unto the ground to avoid getting “hit” by enemy fire. These should protect kids from scrapes and bruises.
Teach Kids about Proper Handling of Guns
It is true that Nerf guns are very safe. However, they still depict firearms in the real world. As such, you can use this opportunity to teach them, early on, the proper techniques of handling a gun. This will provide the basic knowledge on what to do in case they do get to see a real gun.
- Teach kids never to look down the barrel of a gun even if it is not loaded. The point is, loaded or not, you should never stare down a gun’s barrel.
- Teach your child to keep his or her finger off the gun’s trigger unless he or she is ready to aim and shoot. The same is true when carrying the gun. The barrel of the gun should always be pointing downward at the ground, unless your kid is ready to aim and fire.
- Teach your child never to leave his or her Nerf gun lying around unattended and loaded. Somebody else might pick it up and injure himself or herself in case it misfires.
Teach Kids about the Proper Behavior in Nerf Wars
Children love to have highly engaging pretend play or role-playing activities whenever they have Nerf guns in their hands. However, they should also learn not to commit rather reckless behavior during these activities. As such, it is important to remind your kids about the following.
- Never break or enter into homes other than yours. This is already considered a criminal offense and may have the corresponding legal consequences for it.
- Never trespass into someone else’s property.
- Never shoot at passing vehicles and even parked vehicles.
- Never shoot from inside a car or any other vehicle, moving or not.
- Never shoot at animals. This is just cruel and it breaks the trust that they have in you.
Nerf guns are very fun and quite addicting to play with. However, since it is designed to “shoot” at someone, playing with it should be tempered with a sense of responsibility. This makes playing with these awesome toys a lot safer. This also lays the framework for more responsible gun ownership in the future. To purchase a Nerf Gun for your child, be sure to read our recommended list of the top new Nerf Guns For Kids.