With many things in life, I deliver better results with aggressive time limitations. There’s nothing like a tight deadline to make me focus and produce. Unfortunately, shooting isn’t one of those activities. In fact, adding a time crunch to basic shooting tasks has the opposite effect of degrading performance, sometimes to near comical levels.

Also See: What You Need to Know About Shot Timers

One of the most effective ways to improve your shooting skills is to introduce a shot timer into your practice routines. Here’s why.

Time creates pressure, and pressure exposes weakness

It’s easy to be perfect when you have all day, regardless of the activity. When at the range, drawing a gun from a holster, getting on target, making accurate hits, and dealing with malfunctions are effortless endeavors. Why? Well, primarily because no one is shooting back at you, but in broader terms, it’s because there’s no pressure. Pressure makes you perform at a lower level. You don’t rise to the occasion when under pressure. In fact, most often, your performance is the opposite. You fall back to your lowest level of proficiency.

A timer will not introduce life and death levels of stress into your practice routine, but it will add a surprising amount of fumble-inducing pressure. That’s one of the biggest values of using a shot timer. It makes you hurry and exposes the weaknesses in your skill set. If your goal is to improve that’s a good thing. Now you know what needs the most work.

There are several benefits of inviting the clock into the relationship between you and your gun. Let’s explore a few.

Read the rest: How Lack of Time Can Make You a Better Shooter