Thursday, December 1, 2011

Running A-Frame Training - 2

Today, I moved the grid out into the field and set up several hoops before it and and one on each side after it.  I filmed my back chaining work with Dusty.  I can see I'll have to remember to always release him with "Okay."  He's so over-eager, I don't want him to have to wonder if he can go NOW.  He definitely needs a clear cut release word.

I forgot to set up the two jump standards at the end of the grid when I moved it.  As you'll see in the video, I don't realize it until I started working with Belle.  In addition to adding a short sequence before the grid, I also placed a front cross between the grid and the last obstacle on our final three runs.  On our second attempt, Belle does not seem to pick up on the front cross cue and fades to her left.

A word about Rachel Sander's method:  The grid we're working with right now is the foundation for a running A-frame.  For most dogs the end goal is to hit once after the second jump and then to hit the box with all four paws on the next stride.  (A few small dogs may require two bounce strides before the box.)  With Belle, I'll work with the grid for another week or two until I have proofed every contingency I can think up and she is able to come straight through the box without the guidance of the two uprights most of the time.  Then we will start back chaining on the A-frame itself.

I anticipate the same process with the grid will take at least twice as long with Dusty.  Once I begin adding handler motion and other obstacles, his excitement level will go up dramatically.  So I will be breaking the training process down into much smaller increments for him.

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