Friday, June 18, 2010

Dance With Your Dog

I got some good advice from Lynn Smitley at class this week, "Just dance with your dog."  I had been focusing on my footwork and leaving enough room to push out on an elite chances course.  But it messed me up and, of course, Wyatt was confused.  I am finding that if my main focus in on "painting the line", which means drawing a line where you want your dog to go a few feet in front of your dog, that sets me up to "dance with my dog."  I asked if the painting itself provides information or is it a technique to get the handler's body in the right place and flow.  I was thinking it was the latter and Lynn confirmed that.  Lynn thinks it really the eyes that are most important and that the technique forces the handler's eyes to "draw the line."  I'm not sure about that but it definitely keeps my shoulders and whole body in the right place as long as I keep ahead of my dog and cue fast enough.  We tend to focus on obstacle performance and crosses, position, etc but we need to focus much more on the overflow flow or dance. 

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