Clean Run - December 2012 - (Page 17)

Nancy Gyes’ SK I L L S 1 FC Front Crosses 2 3 2 3 1 FC FC 3 FC 4 2 1 What’s new with front crosses? Nothing and everything—position cue fronts, deceleration fronts, double fronts, and fronts in all sizes and shapes! Front crosses have had other names in the past, but this is the one that stuck and that most handlers understand. When executing a front cross, in most cases, the handler stops forward momentum in the direction she and the dog are traveling, turns, and faces her dog. Our dogs are taught to respond to our turning cues while they are still in the groundwork phase of agility training by being rewarded for turning toward us when we turn toward them. If you are a relatively novice handler, I think you will like all the short one-, December 12 | Clean Run Clean Run © MARCY MANTELL FC Decel front cross on one jump T- front cross from landing side of jump FC FC FC Triangle front cross Double front on a T drill setup Four elementary front crosses Front cross on a pinwheel In this front cross the handler moves directly to the farthest wing of the #3 jump to indicate the turn to that jump. Just prior to the dog jumping #2, the handler turns toward the dog to indicate the turn. Continuous front crosses on a straight and on a diagonal line Send your dog over jump #1. Immediately do a front cross to jump #2 and then repeat. Work on the timing of your turn and how far you need to travel to the next jump to get your dog to move forward, collect for the turn, and return back to you. two-, and three-jump front cross drills. But what if you have never ever done a front cross before? I recently had a lesson with a new student who had just moved to California from another country. She was in the higher levels of agility competition back home. I expected she knew how to handle (she did), but what I did not expect is that she had only learned agility doing blind crosses, not front crosses. She could not comprehend what I was trying to describe to her. Front crosses are one of the most prevalent and natural ways (for me) that we change sides on a course with our dogs. But she only knew to turn away from her dog, not turn toward her dog. For those of you who have never done a front cross with your dog, there are many resources in the form of books and DVDs. My Alphabet Drills book would be good to peruse, and Clean Run sells many elementary groundwork and jumping videos that would be a good start as well. I tried to cover as many of the different kinds of front crosses that we see on both American and European type courses as possible. The elementary ones are separated out individually, and the longer drills have many of these elements combined together. Perfect your front crosses with lots of rewards on the short drills, and then see if you can put them all together on the longer ones. You will notice that the 17

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Clean Run - December 2012

Clean Run - December 2012
Table of Contents
Editorializing: All Roads
Tip of the Month
Everything You Always Wanted to Know About Agility…
Backyard Dogs
From Hoof to Woof: What Riders Can Teach Handlers: Identify Patterns to Gain Perspective
Challenges for Rising Stars
Power Paws Skills: Front Crosses
Agility Mind Gym: Full Circle
Training a Deaf Dog to Go the Distance
Awesome Paws Drills
Does Gender Matter When Choosing an Agility Dog?
Control Unleashed Solutions and Answers: The Overexcited Spectator
10 Games to Play with Dogs That Are Recovering from an Injury
Gait Analysis Helps Diagnose Early Lameness & Improve Performance
The F-Word: Building Resiliency to Failure!
Training with the Stars: Maureen Waldron
Building Blocks: Developing Solutions for Agility Problems
Being a Good Student, Part 2

Clean Run - December 2012