If there’s one thing to be said about competitive shooting, it’s that it makes you realize there’s always room for improvement. Those of us in USPSA have shot against the best in the world at hitting targets, because that’s all we practice. It’s a pure set of rules, and the most talented / most efficient / most accurate people invariably will win matches. Based on our past performance, we can tell you exactly who’s better than us, worse than us, or on par with us. It’s a meritocracy with very little room for doubt.
Some people in the defensive, law enforcement, or military mindsets may discount the ability of the competitive shooter. “I shoot to survive, not to win a trophy,” is a common dismissal. However, unlike those environments, in competition there are no squad tactics, legal repercussions, or return fire. USPSA shooters don’t have to arrest people, place limpet mines on ships, spot for artillery, or know the law outside of our rulebook. We just have to focus on getting rounds on target expeditiously. This makes us specialists in what we do.
As espoused multiple times throughout this website, we believe in challenging ourselves. We crave having to perform under pressure. We also constantly seek out the means of learning and teaching the best possible techniques. When it comes to a person’s technical ability to see, aim, and shoot, competition allows us to refine that ability under controlled conditions. Therefore, we encourage everyone seriously interested in firearms to compete at one point or another to determine their true marksmanship ability. We also encourage competitive shooters to take a defensive class to learn more about their ability to perform outside of the confines of the rules that they’re accustomed to.