Java started to improvise. Jumping over the last part of the plank (i.e. the contact) was her new way to run. It was not due to starting spot, and not due to increased speed. It was pure leaping. I could get her to run nicely over a plank on the ground or lifted on bricks, but not if the plank was on dog walk. She even invented her very own not-leaping way to miss the contact. It looks quite deliberate 🙂
When training running contacts it’s good to remember that running all the way down is not natural, the natural thing is to leap at the end. Until the dog really understands that we’re asking her to stride through the contact zone we are relying on muscle memory carrying them through. I guess that memory must have faded during the long pause.
To keep me from obsessing over this problem I made a video of Java learning to take the back side of the jump. This was her second session. The first session was on the same day, but the camera wasn’t on. By the end of the session she pretty much gets the idea! It’s funny how I have to make a conscious decision to value the skills that didn’t require a ton of time to build. 🙂
Now this makes me feel a lot better 🙂
Photo by Stisnprtisn!