Warm-Ups and PROMs

Written By: Jean Emery - Jan• 31•13
Still for Warmup blog

Getting started in agility can seem overwhelming at first.  So much to learn from training obstacles and other skills to your dog, to learning how to direct your dog around a course to the rules of the game itself.  But there is one more critical component that you should not ignore: your dog’s physical health. Agility demands much from your dog and preventing injury is largely your responsibility.  Properly conditioning […]

Movin’ on Up – Ready for the Next Class Level?

Written By: Jean Emery - Jan• 14•13
Sue's Picture April 2010 185

You’ve just finished your first beginner’s agility class and it’s time to sign up for the next session. You might think it is a no-brainer to advance yourself to the next level: Beginner 1 to Beginner 2, Beginner to Novice 1, or whatever labels your training program uses. But agility training isn’t a lockstep process that necessarily progresses in a systematic or predictable upward trend. Before you write that check […]

World’s Recap

Written By: Jean Emery - Oct• 13•11
Ashley Podium with Nancy andKathy

              The 2011 FCI World Agility Championships are over.  For those of us who watched from a hemisphere away, it was an exciting event with insanely difficult courses, an abundance of lithe, long-legged handlers, enviably responsive and agile dogs and a perilously slick surface that looked to me like it came off a roll of indoor/outdoor carpeting at Wal-Mart.               Champions have been crowned in three jump heights–individuals and teams.  […]

World Agility Championships – Live Coverage

Written By: Jean Emery - Sep• 23•11

Even if you are a relative newcomer to the sport of agility, you may have overheard (or will sooner or later) a fellow competitor say “Oh, we’re not trying for World Team or anything.”  Or, you’ve had someone point out a handler and their dog at a local trial with “They’re on the World Team, you know.” So what are they talking about?  World Team? Actually, several of the major […]

Ask Dr. Julie: Is My Dog Physically Ready to do Agility?

Written By: Jean Emery - Aug• 28•11
Ask Dr Jullie#1- Feature Image2(compressed)

  Today I kick off what I intend to be a recurring feature on The Novice Handler blog–Ask Dr. Julie. Julie Mayer has been practicing veterinary medicine in Chicago since 1991 with a holistic and rehabiliation focus for the past fifteen years.  To our good fortune here in the Southwest, Dr. Julie relocated to the Phoenix area and has been providing tremendous assistance to our performance dogs with injury rehab […]

Island Hopping

Written By: Jean Emery - Aug• 21•11
Table for Blog compressed

A down on the table.  Seems like a simple enough behavior, right?  Your dog will do it in your kitchen, in your yard, in the training center, on the practice field, outside the ring.  But, dang if you can’t get that down on the table in the agility ring! Fortunately (some would say), only USDAA any longer requires a down position for proper table performance.  But just because AKC will […]

More of that Newton Stuff

Written By: Jean Emery - Aug• 06•11
Blog 2 Arc - color

Thank you all for your nice comments and support as I get this blogging adventure off the ground.  I am still learning the particulars about this process, but like learning agility, you just have to take one step at a time and let the knowledge build over time. Now back to business, I want to continue my discussion of the “arcs analysis” I introduced in my last post. But It’s […]

What Newton Knew

Written By: Jean Emery - Jul• 29•11

 Were you one of those people who sat through high school physics doodling on your notebook, checking the clock above the classroom door every few minutes waiting for the bell to ring, wondering  when in the world you would ever use this stuff? Surprise.  Now that you are playing agility, you are encountering the direct application of those long-forgotten–or maybe never learned?–physics lessons. A Body in Motion . . . […]

The Secret

Written By: Jean Emery - Jul• 24•11

A few months ago, I offered a Saturday seminar for novice handlers.  The number of handler/dog teams was limited to 10 and the slots filled quickly.  That Saturday, I set up a novice standard course and a jumpers course.  Without any prior coaching from me or discussion with fellow participants, teams walked the course, made their own handling decisions and then ran the courses.  Although I was not surprised by […]