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In order to succeed, we must first believe that we can.

Whats New...  
 **24.03.18 -  Summer 2018 Training Plans Updated  /  Membership Form Added**

AGILITY

What is Agility?

agility

It's fast, furious and a great favourite with competitors and spectators alike. Your dog does not have to be a pedigree dog to compete, but it must be registered with the Kennel Club - either the Breed Register or the Activity Register. There are a minimum of 16 obstacles allowed under Kennel Club Regulations, such as straight forward hurdles, long jump, tunnels, weaving poles, "A" frame, dog walk and a see-saw.

Agility requires the dog to be under the handler's control at all times. Agility classes are run against the clock to ensure that handlers do not take their dogs round the course at a walking pace in the hope of ensuring a clear round.

The setting of a reasonable course time, together with the careful design of the course, allows the dog and handler to show their skill at control and speed.

Agility can become a real addiction. It's fun, friendly and keeps you and your dog in tip-top shape. Most people's first insight to Agility comes from the coverage of Crufts each year and the agility competitions held in December in conjunction with The International Horse Show at London's Olympia. The setting of a reasonable course time, together with the careful design of the course, allows the dog and handler to show their skill at control and speed.

There are over 300 licensed Agility Shows held annually, not to mention the numerous special sponsored events which take place nationwide.

There is no set answer as to which breeds of dog are considered suitable for Agility. Any dog of sufficient size and fitness can traverse all the regulation obstacles, and you will see from watching the various Agility competitions at Crufts that there is a wide variety of breeds competing, each with their differing builds and sizes.

If you decide that Agility is a suitable activity for you and your dog, your next step is to receive some expert training.

Membership and Fees (Click Here for Membership Form)

Annual Membership

£10.00 per year club membership (January - December). Membership is to be paid by the end of January for the full year and includes all members/dogs of same family.

Class Fees

Foundation Level 1:  £25.00 per 8 week course

Foundation Level 2:  £25.00 per 8 week course

Pre-Competion Level 1:  £25.00 per 8 week block

Pre-Competion Level 2:  £25.00 per 8 week block

Starters Class:  £25.00 per 8 week block

Novice Class:  £25.00 per 8 week block

Advanced Class:  £2.00 per class per person

All  8 week blocks must be paid for on week one.

Class Information and Training Times

Summer Training (2018)

We are lucky enough to have instructors who have indepth knowledge of both the Greg Derrett Handling System and Euro Handling (which is generally based around the OneMind Dogs system).  If you join our club and have a preference as to which system you would like to train, we are more than happy to accommodate either system. One cap does not fit all so are happy to work with whatever suits you and your dog.

NOTE:  Please arrive 30 mins before the start time of your class to help with set-up.  Thank you.

Foundation Level 1 (For Puppies +5 months and all new dogs/handlers)

Instructor: Di Shepherd

Class Duration: 1 hr

Evening: Tuesday

Start Time: 6.15pm – 7.15pm

Max. in Class: 5 dogs

This class is for new dogs / handlers who wish to learn the basic foundations for agility.
Level 1 will cover (but not limited to) foundation jumping skills which will include gridwork, set-point exercises, flatwork including circlework and acceleration/deceleration, start-line procedure, rear end awareness, tunnels, lateral distance, offering a jump, obstable/handler focus balance.

 

Foundation Level 2

Instructor: Di Shepherd

Class Duration: 1 hr

Evening: Tuesday

Start Time: 7.30pm – 8.30pm

Max. in Class: 5 dogs

Level 2 we will introduce cone games, drive work, targeting and also look at combining basic jump work with tunnels.

 

Pre-Competition Level 1

Instructor: Hannah Piercy

Class Duration: 2 hrs

Evening: Wednesday

Start Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Max. in Class: 8 dogs

This level will teach all the basic agility handling techniques and foundations for contacts. All these techniques are taught on just a few obstacles.

 

Pre-Competition Level 2

Instructor: Jane Blackwell

Class Duration: 2 hrs

Evening: Wednesday

Start Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Max. in Class: 8 dogs

Combining all basic handling techniques above into small sequences involving 2 or more different techniques – handlers are now having to walk small sequences and be able to find different handling options. Training of weaves and continue with contacts to full height.

 

Starters Class

Instructor: Mirella Ballestracci

Class Duration: 2 hrs

Evening: Wednesday

Start Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Max. in Class: 8 dogs

This class is for dogs who are ready to compete. Taking the sequences into larger sequences / full courses. Learing how to walk a course / understand the dogs line which helps determine which handling option is best to take. Generally continue to improve on the basic techniques / weaves and contacts.

 

Novice Class

Instructor: Julie Chapman

Class Duration: 2 hrs

Evening: Tuesday

Start Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Max. in Class: 8 dogs

This is where we start to introduce advanced handling techniques. We also look to fine-tune all aspects of handling and running full courses. Working on course analysis / handling options, fault analysis and setting individual training goals.

 

Advanced Class

Instructor: None – we all help each other

Class Duration: 2 hrs

Evening: Thursday

Start Time: 6.30pm – 8.30pm

Max. in Class: 8 dogs

This class is an open session for Grade 7's and anyone not in any of the above classes. Although no specific instruction is available, due to the experience everyone has, it is envisaged that everyone works together to help each other.

 

Next 8-Week Course Dates

Week 1 - w/c 30th April 2018
Week 2 - w/c 7th May 2018
Week 3 - w/c 14th May 2018
Week 4 - w/c 23rd May 2018
Week 5 - w/c 28th May 2018
Week 6 - w/c 4th June 2018
Week 7 - w/c 11th June 2018
Week 8 - w/c 18th June 2018

 

Winter Training (October 2018 - March 2019)

Foundation Classes (For Puppies +5 months and all new dogs/handlers)

TBC

Pre-Competition Classes

TBC

Starters Class

TBC

Novice Class

TBC

Advanced Class

TBC

Meet our Trainers

Julie Chapman

trainer_jc

Julie has been competing in agility since 2002 and currently runs Oz (Indistorm Warning) her 10 year old border collie who is due to retire in 2018. Oz is currently Grade 7 but will soon be venturing into Veteran classes. She also competes with her 3 year old Border Collie Tai (Redcharisma Pandemonium) who is currently Grade 5.  Julie first started competing in 2002 with Saxon, her first ever Border Collie and learnt very early that good solid foundation work is essential if you want to progress through the grades in agility. From then on, she has followed the Greg Derrett Handling System and also follows the Susan Salo's Gridwork Foundation Exercises and Susan Garrett's 2x2 Weave Training.  All this combined foundation work took Oz (Indistorm Warning) from Grade 3 to Grade 6 in just 12 months.  In 2016 Julie and Oz (and their team mates) won the Kennel Club Crufts Team Agility Large Dogs Final and qualifed the team again for the Large Team Crufts Final in March 2017.   More recently Julie has started to look at alternative methods of handling (i.e Euro Handling) and finds the more "tools you have in your toolbox" - the more equipped you will be to handle the challenges that judges are now setting.

 

Julie has enrolled on the Agility1st "Instructor" Course which is a KCAI Scheme Preferred Educational Partner (Level III) and is hoping to take her practical assessment early summer 2018.

Jane Blackwell

trainer_jb

Jane has been doing agility for over 5 years and competes at Grade 7 with her 5 year old working cocker spaniel Zola. 

 

Zola hasn't been the easiest dog  to train, going off to scent for food is her aim, but perseverance, determination and good teachers have helped Jane and Zola achieve great success. Jane has also achieved Gold status in the Kennel Club Good Citizen Scheme in 2016.  Janes older dog is a show cocker spaniel Leo, and has dabbled in a range of dog activities. Jane loves teaching both her dogs new tricks.  Jane now wants to use her experience to help others achieve their dreams. 

 

Jane enrolled on the Agility1st "Trainer" Course in 2016 and has now passed her theory and practical assessment so is now a qualified Agility1st Trainer.  Jane says she is thoroughly enjoying learning how to teach and seeing handlers and dogs progress through the classes at the club.  She has learnt new ways of teaching whilst completing the Agility1st Course and will enjoy putting them into practice.

Di Shepherd

trainer_ds

Di's background is in horses but decided to "have a go" at agility when she stopped eventing and she was quickly hooked!

She started her agility career in 2000 with Scruff her Patterdale Terrier, who despite not being the fastest set of paws, was consistent enough to go to Grade 6 and gain a Silver Agility Warrant.

Scruff is now retired and Di is currently training her dog Meli (a young Working Cocker) and starting foundation work with Pip (a rescue Springer). She currently teaches the foundation class and loves seeing dogs and handlers learn and enjoy agility.


Di enrolled on the Agility1st "Trainer" Course in 2016 and has now passed her theory and practical assessment so is now a qualified Agility1st Trainer. 

Hannah Piercy

trainer_hp

Hannah is 16 years old and has been training agility since she was 10 years old.  She has trained 2 dogs and is working with a 3rd.  Her first agility dog was a cross breed named Ben but shortly after she started training he had to retire due to old age and never got the chance to compete so she took on her grandma's Border Collie Frost (Midnight Icy Blue). Hannah has been working with Frost for 3 years and has come across some difficulty throughout her time training him. She quickly learnt that patience, determination and never giving up is most important when training dogs. In 2017 Hannah started competing with Frost getting him from Grade 1 to 5 within the year and also took part in a Crufts Large Team Qualifier and YKC GB Trials. Hannah has also recently taken on a rescue Border Collie Cross Sheltie named Oak (Meisterwork Billy Boy) who she is currently training up and hopes to be competing with him in 2019.

Hannah also owns 2 other dogs which do not compete in agility.  They are both rescue dogs and have been taught various tricks and obedience. Hannah's dreams are to be able to compete at Crufts and Olympia (she will be going to qualifiers in the upcoming year so watch this space). She is also aiming to get both of her dogs to Grade 7.

Hannah is very passionate about teaching and training dogs and would like to pass on her experience, knowledge and patience to others when training dogs, to help them succeed at agility and be able to meet their goals with their own dogs. Hannah has trained using the Greg Derrett System and is now also training using the OneMind Dogs handling system.

Mirella Ballestracci

trainer_mb

Mirella started doing agility purely for fun in 2013 with her 3 year old Dalmation Morgan and found that working as a team made their bond even stronger. She got the bug and started competing in 2016 at Grade 1 and progressed to Grade 3 in her first year of competing. She and Morgan also achieved Gold in the KC Good Citizen Dog Scheme. Mirella now runs her Dalmation Kirby who she got in 2014 and is currently Grade 4. She also trained Kirby to Silver Level KC Good Citizen Dog Scheme. Mirella has found it so rewarding to train her dogs in both obedience and agility and says both her and Kirby have learnt so much together - it is so much fun working with your best friend. Some days it goes to plan, others is doesn't, but her training is always fun for both of them.

This year she has started her Agility1st Trainers Course which is a KCAI scheme. She is looking foward to helping others and watching both handlers and dogs growing together.

 

So Are We Any Good?

We are proud to say, yes we are. We have members who have representated England in European Open Agility Championshps / FCI and WAO's. Four of our members won the Team Agility Final held at Crufts in 2016.

General Information

  • Always bring small, tasty treats and a favourite toy.
  • Always keep your dog on a lead unless the instructor says otherwise.
  • Be aware of other dogs and owners, respect their distance for safety's sake.
  • Always clean up after your dog – bin provided near the gates.
  • It is wise to arrive early to exercise and toilet your dog before class. Try not to feed your dog a meal before training.
  • No bitches in season please – but do attend class yourself if you can!
  • Dress for the weather - most training will take place outdoors.
  • Reward based methods only – NO Harsh handing, no full check chains or physical punishment etc. allowed.
  • Parking available - please ensure access for all other cars in both classes - and access to the field must be available at all times for emergency services if required.
  • As our trainers are volunteers, they may change for each class dependent on availability.

We appreciate your cooperation to make classes as safe and as fun as possible. Thank you.