The New Year is often a time for self-reflection and resolutions. One of my resolutions is inspired by observing my dogs in Agility. They are always ready to play, they always try hard, and they always seem to have fun. “Be playful, try hard and have fun!” It’s a mantra I’ll try to live by in my 2017 agility life.
For any resolution we set, there has to be a plan to go with it! After some self-reflection in 2016, here are some guidelines I put together for every training session and trial:
- Be relaxed and don’t feeling rushed.
- Don’t worry about making mistakes…if they happen, we just got a lesson!
- Be totally engaged with my dog – we are connected, respectful and playful.
- Be mentally engaged with the handling or training challenges that are before me.
- Have a specific goal and a plan in that training session or trial, appropriate for the learning stage my dog is in at that time.
Agility is a GAME that we PLAY with our dogs…be playful, try hard and have FUN! That sums up the attitude of my canine partners and I want to emulate it.
I hope you will consider adopting that attitude everyday in this New Year. You will be happier and so will your pups! If you’d like to explore this topic further, check out this blog post from March 2016.