Monday, June 28, 2010

Drills - Examples

You may recall I babbled about Drills the other day...

Well, now I have a few examples of what I'm thinking of. Nothing fancy, mind you, nothing overly original (sigh), but at least a hint as to what is bumping around in my head.

I just know there have to be lots of these out there, somewhere, but my google searches have come up empty. I would like to create a nice little binder of these kinds of short "training warm-ups" (I like that term better), perhaps laminate some cards, so that at the start of a Homeschooling class session, or when things are dragging, I can just pull one out and get the boys moving and engaged.

At least, that's the thought.

(Truth in advertising: I'm kinda jumping the gun posting these now, because with the exception of "Find Me" (a classic) I haven't actually tried any of them... yet... but I will!)

As a reminder, here's what I thought made a good drill/warm-up (after watching my son's Lacrosse training):

  • Well Organized
  • Clear Goals
  • Short Cycles
  • Fast Pace
  • Less Talk, More Action
  • Competitive/Cooperative
  • Positive, Immediate Feedback

(And yes, I also know I'm missing Summary descriptions on my examples, but these are just Proof-of-Concepts at this point.)


Warm-up Name: Target Tag

Summary: TBD

Skills: Target/Touch

Equipment: 2 Targets (mousepads are nice since they don't tend to slip, but you can use anything the dog knows how to target: plastic lids, Easy Buttons, place mats, bits of cardboard, etc.)

  1. Place Targets 10' apart and stand between them
  2. Cue the dog to touch the Target on your left, click, and drop the reward between your feet.
  3. Immediately repeat with the target on your right.
Repeat 2-3 times


Try a variety of Targets
  • A. Once the dog learns the rules, slowly back away 2-3 feet from the center (forming the tip of a triangle with the targets as the other two points)
  • B. Once the dog is good at (A), reward by tossing the treat onto the other target. See if you can get the dog to run from target to target.
  • C. Once the dog is good at (B), start the dog in one target, send to the second and either reward at your feet or back on the first target.

Warm-up Name: Find Me


Skills: Sit, Come, (Stay)

Equipment: None

  1. Put the dog in a sit-stay, go to another room and hide
  2. Call the dog and reward when he finds you.
Repeat, leaving the dog in that room and going into another

  • For dogs without a Stay:
    • Drop a few cookies and quickly hide while the dog is eating
  • For dogs without an out-of-sight Stay
    • Hide in the same room
    • Hide just around the wall and call immediately
    • Hide in plain sight in the other room
  • Leave the dog in a Down
  • Leave the dog in a Stand


Warm-up Name: Basic Obedience #1


Skills: Sit, Down, Heel

Equipment: 2 Cones (or other place indicating marker)

  1. Set up Cones (A and B) 10-12' apart.
  2. Start at Cone A. Cue the dog to sit
  3. As soon as the dog sits, hurry to Cone B, encouraging your dog to go with you.
  4. Once at Cone B, Cue the dog to down
  5. As soon as the dog is down, hurry back to Cone A, again encouraging your dog to go with you.

Repeat 1-2 more times

  • If your dog has a good Heel, have them Heel with you as your hurry/fast pace/run between Cones.
  • Switch up Sits and Downs at random
  • Cue the dog to Stay, start toward the Cone, and then cue the dog to Cone - see how much of a head start you need to beat him to the Cone (you may need to move the Cones further apart)


Wendy Krehbiel said...

You can't forget the ever important half time "snack"! You can make that training time too. Take one frosty paw container and more than one dog. Have dogs sit or stand quietly. 2-3 licks for one dog, 2-3 licks for the next dog, so on and so forth. Trying to push your way in for extra licks results in losing your turn. Waiting patiently gets you your turn.

BZ Dogs said...

Half Time Snack - I love it!!!

Bet that would work with the coveted Peanut Butter spoon, as well.

Wendy Krehbiel said...

OK, more thoughts... If you're going to set up a "sports practice" you need warm up (stretching) at the beginning and conditioning at the end. I'm envisioning 2 possible forms of warm up. The first being all the tricks your dogs know that stretch them (spin left, spin right, take a bow, weave between legs). The second being more passive - handling practice - sit down with the dog and practice manipulating all their joints. Flex and contract the wrists, the elbows, the shoulders, etc.

As far as conditioning, you could have your dog do 10 pushups (or 20, or 50) - i.e. sit, down, sit, down. You could have your dog do 10 reps of sit pretty for 3 seconds (or 5 seconds or 10). Crawl forward 3 feet 10 times. Back up 3 feet 10 times. Or make it like suicides. Back up 3 feet, come forward 3 feet, back up 5 feet, come forward 5 feet, back up 10 feet, etc...

BZ Dogs said...

Good ideas... I'll see what I can come up with - unless you are feeling inspired and want to write something up yourself! I'll be happy to add them to the website (grin) The three I mention above are here:

... listed in the Warm-up Exercises box.