It's been kinda quiet in here so I'll start something. Have any of you gals taken any formal firearms instruction? If so, what have your experiences been like?? Or did you just go to the range and start shooting?? I'll start. My dad took me to the range with him in May 2001. We fired about 50 rounds at paper plates and a couple targets. I did pretty good. Not formal training, but it was enough to get me interested. In August, I flew to Texas to shoot an IDPA match. I got a brief lesson from the folks I was staying with - it was essentially a mini Chapman Academy lesson. It was wonderful - one-on-one instruction with some of the best shooters I know. Then I shot the match. And had a hoot - and I was bit by the bug, officially. In October, I flew to Florida and took a 2-day class from Randy Cain of Cumberland Tactics in Lakeland. It was a Ladies Only class and was amazing. I was so surprised at the things I was able to do by the end of the class. I think it was 700 rounds. I took 1000 rounds and am not sure what happened to anything that was left over, maybe we just shot it all up. lol. That's a lot of shooting in just a couple days. In 2002 I took classes from Steve Silverman from FRI (Firearms Research and Instruction) and from Walt Rauch. In all the classes, we did basic shooting mechanics, learned to draw from holster, shot from weird positions (pretend you've been shot and you've fallen, your leg and right arm are injured - shoot weak handed, while on your back. Or rolling across the range, or lots of other odd positions to show us we didn't have to be standing up and using both hands to shoot a bad guy). In one class, we spent the better part of half a day going over malfunction drills and how to clear jams. It was extremely valuable training. We also did simunitions/force on force training in a couple of the classed. Again, very valuable. Ted and I do some of that training ourselves during the year, but it's been a while since either of us have taken an actual training class like that. I think 2005 will be a year for me/us to take at least one class each. Practice is great - and we need to do more of that too. But training by a reputable instructor is so worthwhile. They can point out things we're doing wrong, so we can correct a bad habit in the making. They can help us do things more efficiently. So what are your experiences? Any classes you'd take again or recommend to others??