Posted Date: December 10, 2012
Marla Friedler Cooper teaches you how to handle these maneuvers.
How do you let your dog know when you will be expecting him to do a pinwheel (three jumps set up in a circle), a 180 (two jumps with one taken in one direction, then the dog must turn 180 degrees and go back to another jump), or a wrap (a tight turn back to the take-off side of a jump)?
When doing the pinwheel (the tunnel and all three jumps as numbered), you must move past the plane of the first jump (#2) and then turn your shoulders to the left to take the next jump (#3).
When doing it as a 180 you will be doing the tunnel and then jumps #2 and #4 (leaving out jump #3). In this case, you do not move past the plane of the first jump (#2). In fact, you decelerate a little as you approach it. You do not turn your shoulders toward the now-off-course pinwheel jump (#3). You keep your shoulders forward and step laterally to the jump #4.
When doing it as a single jump and wrap you will be taking the tunnel and jump #2, turning your dog tightly back after the jump. To do that you stand still at the jump #2 and do a back-up front cross from the take-off side (turn in to face the dog and use your left hand to cue the jump. Note that some dogs may need a little more gas here, in which case I will show them the go hand/right hand but also have my left hand out so they know they are turning back and not jumping big. As your dog jumps you can complete turning in to your dog so that you and the dog are both pointed at the tunnel with the dog on your left side).
When teaching this exercise I start with a pinwheel both directions, then a 180 both directions and then as just one jump both directions. Then I put it all together so you are spiraling down: pinwheel, 180, single jump back up from landing side back into other side of tunnel. Do this on both sides and then put it all together so you are first going in one direction pinwheel, 180, single jump/back into tunnel other way then pinwheel, 180, single jump.
So, it would go like this:
Pinwheel - #1, #2, #3, #4; then mirror image in other direction.
180 - #1, #2, #4; then mirror image in other direction.
Single jump - #1, #2 and into non-numbered end of tunnel; then mirror image in other direction.
Pinwheel, 180, single jump into non-numbered end of tunnel and then
pinwheel, 180, single jump mirror image.
Practice until your handling is smooth and your turns are tight (this may take multiple practice sessions). Have fun!
Marla Friedler-Cooper is an agility trainer and competitor, a film/tv producer and a college professor. She can be reached at email@example.com or through her websites: bluetangoproductions.com and southcoastdogtraining.com or through her blog: teamcreativedogs.com.