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Intermediate Class

Intermediate presents teams with longer sequences and more challenging approaches to the obstacles, such as crosses before and after obstacles. More emphasis will be placed on handling maneuvers while ensuring the dog’s thorough understanding of independent obstacle performance. Obstacle discrimination and lateral and forward distance handling are incorporated into the lesson plans, along with commonly occurring sequences such as 180s, 270s, pinwheels and serpentines.  Handlers will increase their use of front and rear crosses, turn away cues and similar handling moves.  Intermediate runs for 9 weeks.

Advanced Class

The subject matter for Advanced is substantially similar to Intermediate but with performance requirements and challenges pushed to a higher level.  Sequences are longer and more difficult.  Lesson plans for this class place more emphasis on handling skills, especially specific turning cues such as turn aways, outs, lead out pivots, serpentines, and threadles.  Students will also be introduced to advanced handling cues such as blind crosses, backsides, and the Jaako turn. Improved dog skills are also incorporated into the lesson plans through the use of jump boxes, obstacle discrimination exercises, contact obstacle performances and challenging weave pole entrances and exits. Teams in Advanced are expected to have full proficiency on all equipment, including 12-weave poles, teeter, dogwalk and A-frame. Dogs should be jumping close to their competition height.

Handling Class

Handling will present teams with challenging sequences designed to replicate challenges found in Open/Advanced and Excellent/Masters level courses. Dogs must have competence on all obstacles and handlers should have reasonable competency in basic handling maneuvers. Class exercises will introduce teams to new and updated handling maneuvers with the goal of directing dogs on faster, tighter lines for maximum efficiency and understanding. Each session of Handling is 9 weeks long and a student may stay in Handling for all three sessions as the lesson plans are continuous and not repeated.

Competition Challenges

The Competition Challenges class will use substantially similar exercise sets as Handling, but with challenges increased in difficulty level. Emphasis is placed on skill-building and enhanced handling proficiency by working demanding sequences commonly found in Open/Advanced and Excellent/Masters level courses and, occasionally, in international style courses, such as the ISC/Premier and Master Challenge classes. Each session of Competition Challenges is 9-weeks long and all three sessions may be taken in one training season as the lesson plans are continuous and not repeated.