Monday, 21 February 2011

DixieLicks @ 14 months :-)

Well I guess I have not written much about the Dixie, so what is there to say? So far she is a very cute, bright, swift and dinky border collie. Loves mud and wet and wears the lawn out quicker than all the other guys combined. It seems like forever the conversation when agility folk met her is she going to medium?  And fortunately her 'unofficial' measure puts her in the large height category for KC, which is a relief. We think she is about 17.5 inches - phew! However as you see the height is no issue for her, as her build is good for agility and is incredibly strong for her size, rather like Mr Bigs but scaled up ;-)

This was her second attempt at full height on a 3 jump combination.  Then there was what to do with the contacts. Marc has decided for the time being Stand TOTO will be the starting point. Hence this vid, of Dixie doing her version of Stage 3 in training her position. Ignore the hop over the dog walk plank, it did make me chuckle ;-)

And you see agility training proper has commence, she has even started her 2by2, and is now at 6 poles, which hopefully I will get on vid when they do them next.  Marc is what I call a '2by2er' - it just suits him. It still makes me ask more questions than I can answer, especially the right hand hook round entry. But it works, and I will have my channels and be a 'channeller'. Different methods same results. I guess it is the optium mix of method, application, suitability, value and buzz. As for Dixie, she is just having the bestest time.

Sunday, 13 February 2011

"By gove", have we got it?

Whilst at training, one minute I am thinking and appreciating how well the retraining of Rivi's AF has progressed.  Then brought back down to earth with a 'bump'  as Rivi's DW contact was commented on!!! I was really embarrassed. I don't know why, as it was given in a constructive way and meant well. But what it did do? - thanked them for their feedback as it enabled me to go away and think.  It occurred to me:-

That with the snow and flu, I had simply not thought about the DW. Rivi was quite rightly was offering her down TOTO on the DW as I had not explained to her the change, indeed I had not even thought about it.

So three times last week I used a step in the house to allow Rivi to offer the stand TOTO, then today I transferred it to a plank. (I'm lucky to have a single step, as it seems to look very awkward when done over more than this.)  This to me was stage 1 and 2 and "by gove" we got it.  Then Stage 3 - within 2 sessions of 10 minutes, Rivi was offering me the stand TOTO, even when doing the plank at a run :-)

Then this week at training, she offered it on the DW - yahooooo!!!  And Zev benefited from the refresher. Reinforcing basics - fun and just as vital as me needing to keep 'raising my game'.

As for the RunCon I have not resolved them in my mind from several perspectives including behavioural, physical, ethical and a coaching point of view.  I luv'd this post about contacts Agility - The Chaos Theory as I very much mixed feelings about them and won't do what I consider to be over training.

Trying out RunCons, has been a good learning experience and Rivi has taught me so much about being creative, focused and keeping moving forward. For me it is great that I have found a solution, that most importantly means my Rivi is flourishing. She happy I happy - end of :-)

So "By gove", have we got it?

Thursday, 3 February 2011

Handling like this???

Handling, handling, handling. This week I have had the good fortune to have two great training sessions. Opportunities to explore different ways of handling turns in a supportive environment, where you can try different things and analyse how it might work, how does it feel - does it suit you style, does it have flow, does it suit suit your partner, does it help turn acceleration or provide better clarity of where turning to?  To talk things through, articulating and discussing it, embeds learning processes. So refreshing, challenging and exhilarating.

So I tried some handling cues the turn through the gap of two jumps in a style that I had seen whilst watching last years FCI Agility World Champs.

Just love training and it has been such a buzz being able to get some done.

Zev did some training on Sat, kindly arranged by Bernadette and held at Lesley's place. See the OBay blog for the video's from that. Really enjoyed being with the shelties, and the collies, and the honorary poodle. Variety is the spice of life!!!!