In music, there are times to run the scales in the woodshed to become dramatically better. Other times, get the band together to become a seamless music making machine. Then comes the gig, time to perform.
Steve Vai's brillance was honed through practice. Black Flag became great through rehearsing. The Beatles laid the foundation to change music through gigging.
However, the easiest path to improvement is a balance of each.
Climbers by default gig too much. Almost always projecting. Sometimes they rehearse. More time spent practicing the scales of climbing is a direct path to better gigs.