This past Saturday I attended a basic firearms course at the range I have membership to (Popguns in Indianapolis). Class was taught by an Indiana certified LE firearms instructor.
I would recommend the course to anyone just getting started with handguns, or who doesn't shoot as well as the gun should (my case).
The course started with his philosophy on handgun skills and self-defense. The 3 M's, Manipulation (which he said makes up about 1% of what you need to succeed in a gunfight), Marksmanship (another 1%), and Mindset (which makes up the other 98%.)
Then it covered SAFETY. Going over the 4 rules.
Manipulation included things such as grip, stance, and trigger control.
Marksmanship included aiming and sight/target focus.
Course was about 2 hours classroom/1 hour range.
I improved a good deal. I learned that my grip was off some (weak hand was to far back), but my stance was good. My gun was also sighted in wrong, it shot about 3 inches right at 25 feet
Once that was corrected, he helped me correct a second and third problem. Anticipation and target focus.
At the start I had a habit of anticipating the recoil and dipping the gun down. He loaded a couple of dummy rounds and had me shoot two mags. By the end I was not doing it nearly as much. Having him there to talk me through each shot was a big help. "Nothing to worry about just a plastic round. Draw the trigger back, let the hammer falling be a suprise."
The second problem, I was sometimes focusing on the front sight (GOOD), and sometimes on the target (BAD. Once I got the pistol sighted and had less anticipation, I was able to FOCUS, FOCUS, FOCUS on where I was focusing front sight or target.
The course really helped my marksmanship and has given me a good set of skills to practice when I get back to the range, or dry firing at home. My group went from about 6 inches, to around 3 inches (with 2 outside due to anticipation.) Well worth the $75 dollars to learn how to do it right.