As previously mentioned a couple of weeks back we met up with Leah and Jan at Leah's sand school for a training session. It was good fun and I think we all got a lot out of the session.
Leah has been very patient with me recently in trying to teach me "push throughs". This is very hard for me; other people including Toni and Lee have tried to help me with little success due to my gross ineptitude in this task. However, Leah has put a slightly different spin on the process and something has clicked in my brain (a rare occurence). Rather than viewing this handling technique as the opposite of a "pull through" i.e. a "push through" I am training the sequences as multiple "go rounds". I have never taught my dogs to "go round" for some reason known vaguely to myself. Anyway, I have now taught this skill to Niamh and she is proving very good at it. Now I can apply it to the so-called "push throughs". I still struggle to move myself along the sequence but I have the same issue with "pull throughs" so this is still work in progress. However, I now have a set technique in my head and something I can practise. Slowly, it's starting to come together!
We (royal we) have also taught Kizzy "go rounds" and she enjoys this exercise. We have also been working hard on tightening up her turns and this too is improving. Still we have a few issues with the down dog walk but Andy has adapted things slightly and things are improving at a rapid rate.
Kizzy has been a little off colour over the past few weeks and I really think this is post season issues. She was the same after her first season. In the last week she has really come out of it and is much more her usual self. In the video clip she was still in this state of mind and wasn't really firing on all cylinders plus she really struggled at the top end of the school in the deep sand, especially in the weaves. That said we think she did really well on a very difficult sequence which Leah set up for us. It was loosely based on the previous day's champ course at Scunthorpe. Andy is keen to practise tough sequences with Kizzy along with her more simple drills in order that he is as prepared as he can be for Beacon when Kizzy has been drafted into the Crufts team (YIKES!)
Anyway enough babble, here's the video! Oh one more thing, I have included some bloopers and have plastered "oops" on my video clip. Readers of a certain magazine will appreciate (or not) the fact that I have done this; or indeed the fact that I've published my video on YouTube!