Thursday, May 29, 2014

I Have a Theory...

{Pico reminding me that lots of things are possible}

When I say, "I have a theory..." Mike says, "Really? that's odd!" It seems I have lots of theories about lots of things because to me, that seems better than thinking I know it all I guess.

After last night's surprise Private Lesson, I came up with 2 theories:

1. Pico needs to learn to work with distractions because he clearly can still run Agility (I was thinking he'd never run a full course again)
2. I need to learn to work with distractions too because if I focus and don't waste time worrying about taking up too much class time or worry that I'm not 'getting it' fast enough, I too can run a full course!

Agility has never been easy for me and lately, it seems to be more and more difficult so I've been a little discouraged. This weekend, we drove 2.5 hours to pick up our new Teeter so I must forge on! Can't quit now with an AKC lightweight aluminum Teeter sitting in the backyard!

On the way to class last night, I had the typical pep talk with myself, "You can do this!", "Plan and follow your lines!", "Keep your eye on Pico!", "Use clear and timely signals!" (and I of course told Pico he is a Champion)

Once, I got to class and Linda handed me the course map however, I had instant anxiety. I have never had this reaction to learning before and it makes me empathize with fellow nursing students who would instantly blanch and break out into a sweat when a math test was announced.

Off I went to walk the course... and the despair deepened. Gone were my pep talk words, replaced by "I don't know, I don't know, I don't know".

"What would you do if #3 was the tunnel?" Linda asked. "I don't know" came to mind but I answered that I would run at an angle toward the Tunnel blocking the Dog Walk and I demonstrated. Wrong!
Linda patiently explained and demonstrated that I would need to run toward the 15 mark on the wall, essentially running Pico toward the wall. I would then turn 90 degrees when he was lined up with the tunnel and I'd give him the 'Tunnel' cue. Otherwise, my idea would send him over the Dog Walk.
Next, we discussed how I could get him over the Dog Walk successfully. Linda explained that when deciding on a handling plan for Discrimations, it is helpful to know the path to both Obstacles so that you understand what TO do as well as what NOT to do. Got it.

Next we worked on 3-4-5-6. Linda assured me that we had worked on 4-5 in class and eventually, the light went on. I would do a Front Cross (FC) at the end of 3, send Pico to 4 off of my Left and do another FC to a Forward Send over 5. A little rocky on the Double FC but okay, Got it.

Next, we looked at 7-8-9. Linda helped me to see that Pulling Pico from 6 to 7 would get me stuck in bad spot. Instead, a FC from 6-7 would set me up to get to 8 for a RCOTF (not our strongest move) and a RC into 9.

Lastly, we talked about 10-11-12-13. With Pico on my left from 12-13, I was going to need to RCOTF after 13, and of course I already knew that I'd need to run him toward the wall and turn him when he was lined up with the Tunnel! Did you catch that? I KNEW SOMETHING! :)

Linda had me walk the entire course and then it was Go Time. I really felt ready for once. And apparently I was because Pico aced it! He didn't even so much as glance at an incorrect obstacle!

1 comment:

gscindy said...

Sometimes we are our own worst enemies. You and Pico are a great team and class is a wonderful place to test new skills and show yourself that you can do it :-)