Exercise vs. Recreation & Our Perceptions

Exercising & stretching, for me personally is like taking unpleasant medicine or eating a particular vegetable that I may not be fond of but, “it’s good for me”. I equate exercise with discomfort, out of breath, boring, & sometimes painful.
I do enjoy walking, hiking, climbing, softball, biking, swimming. But if one was to ask me to do these things as exercise, I immediately get into a “stubborn” mode & the things I may like doing have now just become “work” or “drills”. What’s the problem? It’s perception of is it “fun” or is it “work”? Is it “recreation” or is it “exercise”?
The point I’m trying to make is how we perceive something affects how we actively participate in something. If we perceive training, exercising, stretching as something akin to work & drudgery then we will be less likely to stick with it unless forced to do so. If on the other hand we perceive something like, learning tricks, going to a wonderful destination, playing games, camaraderie of companions, relaxation & massage; then not only do we look forward to participating we are more apt to do these things more often.
This applies to dogs as well as people. If training times with your dog become a time of being in a military school filled with repetitive drills, abrupt commands, and all “work” and no “play”; you and your dog will not look forward to this time together.
So get creative, what are some ways you can think of to make training fun for both you and your dog?
Recently at a doctor checkup, my doctor encouraged me to exercise more. I think he saw the scowl that immediately appeared on my face. So then he suggested Yoga or Tai Chi and go slow with these things. He also suggested walking more.
All I could think of was, walking in my neighborhood is no fun & at times can be stressful for various reasons. But change of location, along a river or a creek, along a beach, through a forest, up a mountain, in a park all can transform “exercise” into “recreation”. And what can make this even more enjoyable is bringing my dogs along!
I use outings with my dogs as an opportunity to train some fun into our ordinary “drills”. Looking for trees or lines, or objects that I can have my dog heel in creative patterns in, through & around, over & under, zigzags, weaving, hide-n-seek, playing fetch, and so much more. In all these fun activities simple commands can be put into the mix: sit, down, come, stay, wait, up, over, off, leave it, stand, etc.
Now, when you’re all done & ready to relax. Spread out a big blanket and stretch out your tired muscles very slowly. Now is a great time to stretch your dog too!
Here’s a great video to get you started on how to stretch your dog. This guy has a total of 11 videos on how to stretch the various muscles in your dog. He also has some for people too! It looks so very relaxing and not only will you feel great your dog will benefit so much from the stretching but it deepens the bond you share with your four-legged friend!
Enjoy this YouTube video: ” “The Other End of The Leash -Dog Stretches”
Okay whose going to give me a massage now. LOL!

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NO AGILITY CLASSES

There will be no agility class starting in June until I get location & schedules worked out. Things are changing & the drought is & may be a factor this summer. I will update as soon as I can. But for now Agility classes are on hold.
In the meantime, we are offering a variety of other classes. As soon as I can confirm classes locations & dates I will notify the entire “Dogdom”.

Canine Freestyle (tricks, music, fun & more)!

Only one more night to Canine Freestyle class. Where your dog is the star!!! Dogs have lots of fun, dogs can dance, have fun, do tricks, have fun, learn fancy heel moves, & did I mention have lots of fun! Of course you will too! Owners don’t have to “dance”, but strongly suggested to have fun with your fur baby!
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Teasers… NEW, FUN Classes Coming Soon!!!

Just a quick note… Pretty soon we will have ALL the information for our upcoming classes for April & May!!!
Just a hint… We will be offering a terrifically FUN & absolutely POSITIVE class to relax, bond, & DANCE with your dog!
Coming Tuesdays for 6 weeks, Beginning April 22nd, 2014
“Canine Freestyle” Class!
We will be learning some tricks, incorporating basic obedience & heeling all into a choreographed DANCE routine.
Even if YOU have two left feet and can’t dance, no worries! After all this will be a time to showcase your unique, one of a kind, special four-legged friend. Your dog will dazzle you & amaze you with his hidden talents just waiting to be discovered.
Check back, because in just a few more days we will have the registration info & packet ready for you to sign-up with.
AND since this is & will be a popular class, you must sign-up ASAP to make sure you get a spot because class space is very limited to give all the dance teams room to practice their moves.
I will also be letting you know who our fabulous, talented & skilled instructor will be in an upcoming blog.
Here are some videos to “wet your whistle”:
A Golden Reteiever:

A Great Dane
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4K8kr461H3o
Little White Dog (perhaps a Havanese)

Two Border Collies

And a great mix of the 10 finalists at the world championship 2012

So stay tuned! In the meantime, look for your dancing shoes!
P. S. Other upcoming classes will also include:
Intermediate/CGC/CGC-Adv. Class
Rally Obedience Class
Puppy Training & Socialization Class
Family Dog Class (beginning basic training. & manners).
I’m looking forward to a great spring training seasons & seeing all of you too!
Kathy

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