Tuesday, 20 September 2011

NIreland Judging & Training

NI Judging & Training

Last Friday I flew out from Birmingham to Belfast for the weekend. I was due to judge at a show on the Saturday, and conduct a training seminar on the Sunday.

The forecast for the weekend was not particularly great; in fact it was very wet and windy. I decided that although I normally dress up smart to judge, it was better to do a good job and be warm, than to look smart and to be cold!

I judged 1-3agility, 4-7 agility, 1-5agility and 6&7 agility. The last course of the day I built was one of my courses I have used before in Norwary. (I also used it at Dog Vegas this year) and it was better if you could send your dog to the weave, rather than take it into the weave. It made for a great atmosphere and the handlers enjoyed the challenge.

On the Sunday I did 2 x 3hours of training sessions. The first group was more advanced, whilst the second group consisted of slightly less experienced dogs.

I focused on efficiency in handling and also how to shape / que turns before the dog became airborne over jumps. Another feature of the training was weave entries, and how to a) teach your dog to find them b) how to handle and mentally approach the training of weave entries c) the progression and isolation of skills associated with weave entries.

The afternoon group were keen to learn motivational skills and how to stay connected with their dog whilst handling on the course. There were in fact several examples of the dog and handler ‘splitting’ but we managed to do some good work to maintain a consistent and effective handling style.

Thanks to everyone who organised and attended the seminars. I enjoyed my weekend judging & training.

This week is busy again. Wednesday I travel with my friend Anthony Clarke to do a 2 day joint seminar in Holland, followed by a show in Ghent (Belgium) over the weekend as preparation for the World Champs that are just around the corner!

So it is more days on the road before the final countdown to the FCI World Championships. Exciting times.