Monday, 13 March 2017

Starting Distance Handling for Agility

Why Distance Handle?

I wrote this recently after being asked to describe to club members how to make a start with distance handling.  I hope it's helpful.  Also worth checking out is the FaceBook group for Distance Handling here:

There are lots of reasons:
- Because it’s cool, and worth a try
- To add more flexibility to your handling
- Because you can’t run as fast as your dog
- Because you really can’t run at all!
The emphasis you place on building distance skills will depend on how many of the above apply to you. Handling at a distance will always be riskier than conventional methods, so handlers who can move fast, usually take that option. For the rest of us distance handling is worth the time investment, because it helps us to be competitive at all.

My Thoughts on Training Distance Handling:
1.     Confidence is key!  If your dog is to race away and take obstacles on command, without you there, he needs to know you will be pleased he did.  So, reward - reward - reward – even if he takes the wrong obstacle, or turns the wrong way, reward the attempt.  This always important, but it is especially so at the start of distance training.