Practicing with strobes requires one thing, practice. The more practice you have the better you will understand how it works and the more confident you will be in the field when using it.
I learned in class that when bouncing flash you receive the best light when the strobe is at a 90 degree angle to it’s base and is bounced off a white anything (wall, piece of clothing, vehicle, you name it, as long as it is white or close to it). Also never let the subject see the white rectangle on a strobe where the flash emits from, it should be directed towards the side or to the back.
In the image above I aimed my flash at a white cylinder pillar as the sun set behind her.