Dissecting Weaving, the new DVD & I Didn’t ForgetTuesday, December 16, 2008
Okay, before I settle into answering the weave questions that have come in, I thought today I would write about the new DVD and what brought me around to the 2×2 method. It is a long entry, I hope it doesn’t come off as being propagandacious to any of you.
I guess, at the center of it all, is my admission, that I am a pretty impatient person. I, like many of you I’m sure, do not like wasting my time. I think that is what pushes me to to try to improve upon technique when I observe a slow learning process for my dogs. In my opinion the 2×2 method of weave pole training is one of my best ideas to date. If there ever was an opportunity to use the phrase paradigm shift in dog agility, this would be it.
If you are about to train a new dog to weave, are in the midst of training with another method, or are unhappy with your dog’s current weave pole performance in the ring, it just makes sense for you to invest in the new DVD immediately.
For those of you that are thinking you are satisfied with how your dog weaves now, you will be blown away with the improvement you’ll see once you work through all of the exercises on 2 disc-set. The name “12 Poles in 12 Days” isn’t just the title of the DVD, it is a fact. Disc one is a daily video journal that shows you how I taught two dogs to weave from start to finish, all in a matter of few days, totaling less than 55 minutes of training time. After 12 days the dogs had such a great understanding of how to weave it was almost impossible to distract either dog from their job of weaving.
For those of you that think this is all a marketing ploy, and really don’t believe it is possible to get that level of efficacy in just 55 minutes of training, believe it! I am sure people’s skepticism comes from that fact that when training their own dog to weave, (using traditional methods), they likely spent those first 55 minutes trying to teach the dog not to jump wires, steal a toy or go around angled poles! I’m sure it is hard to imagine teaching a dog to weave in less than one week would be possible? But 2×2 weave training really is just that easy. I liken this to myth of the 4 minute mile. For years people believed the 4 minute mark would never be broken by runners at the mile distance. In 1954 Roger Banister finally did it. Once people realized it could be done it has plummeted ever since and now stands almost 20 seconds below that once elusive barrier. I think in the same way dog agility people have gotten used to the idea that weave pole training just takes 6 – 9 months or more to get right. The 2×2 method will be dog agility’s Roger Banister. Now you can take a few short weeks, train your dog to weave, and then we can all think of something far more productive to do with all of that extra time!
You may be thinking “yeah right, but Susan you are a professional, I could never train that way”. I can understand your doubts and let me just say, you and I are a lot more alike then you may think. I, too, have struggled with other methods of weave pole training over my 19 year career in the sport. My first dog I trained to weave with the-hand-in-the-collar-lure-with-a-cookie-method. My next one I used angled weave poles. For the following dog, I invested in one of those expensive channels & guide wires set ups (that dinosaur rusted under our porch for the next 10 years until we got rid of it last summer!). In 1997 I switched to teaching weaves using 3 poles and pure shaping. It worked pretty well, but I will admit, it did take more dog training savvy then the average person may have. Over then next 5 years I saw how my own students struggled with the process, and I confess, I did something a good instructor should never do. I was so troubled to see the frustration of both dog and handler trying to shape weave poles, I often would just step in and trained the dogs for them.
All of that inspired me to come up with a better way to teach dogs to weave and for the last 6 years, hundreds of people have had really spectacular results training their dogs using my 2×2 method. I mentioned yesterday that I almost released a DVD 5 years ago with this process, I am so glad I didn’t. What I have learned over the past five years, both training my own dogs and observing others, has all been poured into this new project. You are truly the benefactor of the 5 year wait.
The DVD, gives you easy to follow, step-by-step instruction that I promise ,will make it unbelievably simple to follow along with at home, even if you are not a professional like me! It is something you can do at home. You no longer have to wait to practice your dog’s weaving only when you go to your training club or school. It doesn’t matter if don’t have a huge agility field of your own, heck, some of my students have stared the 2×2 training in their living room! For those of you that have Excellence in Weave Pole Training: Phase One you have a perfect complement to the program. For the rest of you that don’t have it, don’t worry as I have included on Disc Two the 15 page workbook that was part of that ebook. Print out this summary report, take it with you to your training yard and it will guide you through the process you saw on the DVD. Think of it as my insurance policy to make sure you do get it right, I am going to do what I can to make sure you all have success with the 2×2 method.
If you are reading this and thinking, great, I will get this when I get my next dog, here is my advise to you, don’t wait. Take your currently trained dog and first of all, work through the advanced weave drills found on disc 2. If these challenges overwhelm your dog go back and work through the 2×2 process from the start with him. Not only will you be impressed with the improvements, even an accomplished agility dog will show, you will quickly become a 2×2 pro yourself, making the process that much easier you when you do get your next new puppy.
Disc 2 was a ton of fun to make and if you approach the challenges in the light-hearted way I present them, you will see the same amazing results. Basically, because of how the 2×2 process builds upon the dog’s own understanding, there is no weave pole entry presented that properly trained 2×2 dog cannot nail within 3-5 attempts. Since you never use gates or wires, so there is nothing to fade. Quite often the dog’s understanding of finding entries is faded once you remove these props. With 2×2 trained dogs, the dog’s trigger for success is the sight of the poles themselves. Any time you come across a weave entry that overwhelms your dog, you just set it up at home, rotate the first 2 poles to remind the dog of his job, and over then next 3-5 reps rotate the poles back and then, voila, the dog has the entry! It only takes a matter of minutes.
One of the really beneficial side effects of the method is the dog’s low head position. If you haven’t seen it yet, check out the introductory video clip I have on my YouTube site. . One of the things that makes 2×2 dogs stand out in the crowd (beside their awesome weave skill) is their low head positions as they drive through the poles. Low head position means the dog is not ‘floating’ through the poles he is actually driving through. This translates into more speed in the poles. The next thing this method affords you is independence. Throughout the entire training process, you are training the dog to be thoughtful on his own, allowing him to choose what he wants to do. This makes it easy for you at a trial, to take off on your dog, leaving him in the poles, so you can get to your next handling position. You no longer have to run beside your dog cajoling him as he weaves. I tell my students, you are a dog trainer for a few weeks outside of the ring, so that you can concentrate on being a handler once you get into the ring!
I could go on and on but I will leave that for another time:). Don’t think I have forgotten about my promise of a gift. For those of you that haven’t read my promise here is what happened. I was genuinely, really floored when I saw how much tax my fellow Ontarians have to pay when they buy this DVD from me so I decided to give everyone something at least of equal value in return (in my opinion this is triple the value). Here is what I have come up with; anyone that buys the new DVD from my website will get a free ebook from me in return. The ebook is a complete transcript of the entire 2-Disc DVD set. This gives you 3 awesome resources to ensure your success with this method; 1) the DVD itself, 2) the 15 page work book 3) the ebook of transcripts from the DVD (complete with helpful pictures). So if you have already bought the DVD (not a problem you will still be getting your free gift) and for those of you that haven’t, get on it! Okay so it is hard to give away anything free without coming off as slightly propagandacious. Again, that is not my intension, believe me, this free gift is complete spontaneous on my part but will be completely worth while to anyone that buys the DVD from our website. Your free gift will be ready for you by next week and everyone that has bought DVD from me will be eligible for it. Stay tuned, I be posting information in a few days. In the mean time, click this link to get your copy of Susan Garrett’s 2×2 Weave Pole Training, 12 Poles in 12 Days.
So if this blog entry has sparked any other weave questions, send them in, I am planning on answering weave questions tomorrow.
Today I am grateful for Brenda, a very talented student of mine who always pitches in to help at a moments notice, even when I ask “hey Brenda can I get a transcript of the DVDs really quickly?”. Brenda R-O-C-K-S-!-!