Monday, July 18, 2011

Working on Timing

Split and I continue our practice to get us operating more like a team and my timing back to what Split needs it to be. Timing is absolutely the hardest thing about agility. In the evolution of the team, you both get more confident. As the dog's confidence grows they tend to get faster, which throws off your timing. The cycle begins again. It seems that this is an element that constantly needs to be refined. I find that depending on how forgiving the dog is in terms of your timing, the job is harder the less forgiving.

Split is very sensitive to my motion. I want it that way really. BUT, it tends to make my timing more critical and the need to have my cues more clear and intentional as well.

This course is a great course to stay calm on!

I started this course with a leadout and my location between 3 & 4, but closer to 4 to clarify the line for him. He read the 1-2-3 sequence perfect every time. Next I did a serpentine recall over 4 to 5. My timing and body position were really important here. His commitment to #4 was rather late and I could not leave as early as I wanted, even if I gave him the "jump" command. I found that the serpentine recall as describe by APHS was not the way to go. I actually had to keep my chest facing the jump if I wanted to be farther away, or if I did a serpentine recall I had to be closer to the jump. His late commitment on #4 changed how I was going to cue 5 to 6. I underestimated the number of cues it would take to get him to turn. I stayed stationary, used my outside arm, waited for him to turn and then I took a couple of steps backward between 5 & 6 to cue 6, catch him and cue the weaves.

Split kept popping on pole 5. I think it was the typical weaving into nowhere problem. Once we did get the weaves I did a landing side FC on #8 and sent to the tunnel. Once he was committed to the tunnel I booked it as fast as I could to #10, giving him a cue to turn into me (outside arm) and set the line to #11. This, he read really nicely!

Things that I noted with Split.

1) His commitment point to #3 tunnel was much shorter than his commitment point to #9. I am sure that clarity played a role.
2) Outside hand is still very effective with Split. He gives me relative collection quickly and adjusts his path.
3) His startline confidence is coming back.

Fun little course and easy to set up!

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