Saturday, April 24, 2010

Workout for the week

Hopefully everyone has been exercising with their dogs, and both you and your pup are getting used to the exercises and commands.

As a reminder, perform each exercise for 15-20 seconds, approximately 15-20 repetitions. All movements should be slow and measured, use a 3 count. Count to 3 on the “down” movement, and 3 on the “up” movement. While you are performing the exercises have your dog practicing their “sit” and “watch me’s.” Between each exercise walk at varying speed for 2 minutes. Try to increase the speed at which you are walking, and increase the number of faster paced walks. Hold your leash in your right hand, and treat with your left. The goal is to treat when your dog is walking beside you on a loose leash. Make use of obstacles such as benches, tables or trees to walk around, the variety of pace and direction will help keep your dog focused on you. When you make a right circle speed up your pace a little so your dog will learn to speed their pace to stay beside you, and with left circle slow your pace.

Be sure to bring water for both you and your dog. Take water breaks every 10-15 minutes. I find it easiest to set the dog’s water dish near a bench. I can then place my water bottle close, and we can both take a water break. You may want to print this article off and place it near the water so you can refresh your memory of the exercises.

This routine should take you approximately 35-40 minutes to complete.

Start with a 5 minute warm-up, walk at your normal pace for several minutes, then at a faster pace. Your dog should be on a loose leash, walking beside you.

Push ups with a leg lift– Have your dog “sit” beside you, or underneath you. Gently lower your chest to the object using the 3 count, then raise yourself using the 3 count. While you are in the “up” position raise one leg as high as you comfortably can. Complete your 2-minute walk and complete another set raising the other leg.

Bicycles - Lay on the ground and have your dog sit or lay beside you. Rest your hands behind your head and raise your legs off the ground.  Bring your knee and opposite elbow together then touch the other side.

Lunge - Have your dog sit or down.  If they are fairly reliable in their "stay" have them on a longer leash.  If they are still learning stay, have them close to you so you can correct if necessary.  Step either forward or backward with one leg.  Stepping back is a little easier on the knees.  Slower lower your body until your front knee is bent at a 90 degree angle. Be sure your knee does not go forward of your toes.  Complete 12-15 lunges on one leg, walk for 2 minutes, then complete 12-15 lunges on the other leg. 
Arm raises - Have your dog sit or down close to you.  Slowly raise your arms to shoulder height.  For added difficulty use light weights.  Raise your arms 25-30 times. 

Complete 3 sets of each excercise. Then walk for 3-5 minutes as a cool down and you’re done!! 

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