When I think of handler and obstacle focus, Stuart Mah immediately comes to mind. I have read many of his articles, and I have had the pleasure of attending three of his seminars. At the last seminar, he stressed the different ways a handler can indicate she wants her dog to be in handler focus or obstacle focus. Among other things, he stressed that to bring a dog into obstacle focus the handler uses a (relatively) loud, driving voice. To bring a dog into handler focus, the handler uses a quieter voice. Unfortunately, when my adrenaline starts pumping, there's really no such thing as a quiet voice.
This morning, I set up the course below and made up my own bonus line. I knew the hardest part would be getting the turn to #4. There were plenty of timing issues today, but on our first attempt I also used a driving voice when I said "left" to indicate the turn. Now, there are two problems with that loud "left." First of all, it was a loud driving voice, which as Stuart Mah maintains is best used when you want your dog in obstacle focus. Definitely, not what I wanted here. Additionally, "left" by itself is ambiguous to Belle since the tunnel could also be viewed as being "left." A quiet "left hoop" would provide ever so much more information. Unfortunately, it will not make up for a failure to support Belle's line to the point where I want the turn. ;-)