Thursday, April 17, 2008

It's just a jump to the left...and then a step to the right

Don't worry, I won't be discussing the upcoming presidential election so set your mind at rest.

I went to physical therapy yesterday and sheepishly confessed that I'd been running just an itty bit out at the agility field. Much to my surprise the therapist said yeah that's o.k., in fact why do you go out there and try some more? I was happy about that. I've been worried that the PT doesn't quite understand what's involved with agility since she's never seen it so I'd brought my video camera to show her a run just to make sure she's o.k. with me trialing next month. She did seem surprised by it, she was thinking it was more like the conformation thing but still insisted I'd be o.k., maybe 75% but still able to run.

Anyway, she started me on some exercises that involved little not quite running steps, sort of like dance moves and as I was doing them I was thinking that they'd be great for working on handler footwork for agility. I thought I'd share them here with the disclaimer that you proceed at your own risk. If you get your legs all tangled and end up flat on your face or your ticker says uh no thanks, well, you're on your own there. Also, you'll have to forgive the graphics. I drew them myself and in addition to not being a medical professional I'm also not in any way good at art.

Side Shuffles 1:

Side Shuffles 2:

Zig Zags:

Cha Cha Cha. Or something. I'm not much of a dancer. I was traumatized by disco dance lessons that I was forced to attend when I was 12 years old and never quite recovered. Feel free to add in whatever groovy moves you have to the basic patterns.

Obviously I've only mapped out the basic moves, you can repeat the patterns over and over in a long line, then go back the way you can to work the other side. I think the PT had me doing the Zig Zags forward and backward and I tried them backward on my lunch hour with no problem apart from inherent complete lack of coordination. The Grapevine is sometimes recommended by agility instructors as a way to work on footwork for front crosses so maybe some of you have seen if before or perhaps you've been to aerobics class but it looks complicated if you've never seen it before. Never fear, it's easy once you figure it out and maybe seeing a video of it will help if the diagram looks too complicated. If you search YouTube you can find perky aerobics teachers that have nice abs and wear tight sport bras that show off their nice abs to give you a demonstration but this woman is more my style:

Sorry, I can't embed the actual player (it's all Blogspot's fault I tell you) but if you click on the link it takes you right there.

In addition there's always the Time Warp:

I'll bet those pelvic thrusts are great for the abs.

Darn it. Blogger's acting all screwy and I can't get enlarged versions of the diagrams when I click on them and of course they're too small to read on screen. I'll see what I can do about it. Also, I promise I'll fix the colors on my blog one of these days. I changed them while on Vicodyn and I'm not entirely sure what I did or how to change them again. Yeah, I know, the clueless shouldn't try to run blogs but I'll just bet half my technical problems are Blogger's fault. Yep, that's my story and I'm sticking to it.


  1. Roxanne2:41 PM

    That footwork looks a lot like Human Agility Training from our own Lori Hansen. I've taken her agility-specific workout classes here in town, but they also sell that DVD through Clean Run for those who don't have access to Lori like we do.

    For me, it's not just footwork and cardio. It's actually really hard for my brain to process new patterns.

    I loved her classes, but I dropped them because with Lilly's issues I decided that it didn't matter how fast I could run or how quick my feet were.

    Glad to hear they're upping your movement potential. Just don't overdo it!!

  2. I had been meaning to take one of Lori's classes but the timing was never quite right for me. Plus I need more help with the dogs' handling & training then I do with my own footwork so I never got around to it. I do occasionally get my feet tangled up in a front cross so maybe these exercises from the PT will help. Plus they make a good handler warm-up if you're not afraid of looking stupid.