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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Note: I posted this in the ANY dog sport forum, and then realized more eyes will see it here. Mods - can you delete the other post?

I found a lot about warm-up, massage, stretching and cool-down, but not a whole a lot of information about physical conditioning for jumping.

Does anyone know of exercises for physical conditioning that would help for jumping?

The dog is over 2 years old (exact age unknown), lab/pit mix. He is currently clearing 58". We do disc freestyle twice daily for a full body workout. We jump about once a week or so.
 

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Swimming is good, and hills. I like to throw non rolling type objects upthe hill. Works great.
I have read that teaching a stretch command (which I imagine is easy, just catching the dog when he naturally does a stretch and marking/naming it) is good for warmup, and that interval training is best, especially for burst exercise like jumps: agility, swimming, the hill work Jeff mentions, brisk walking over varied terrain (beach, dirt, grass, hills).

Supposedly, two is a very good age, since under a year of age should not jump higher than about three-quarters of their shoulder height, and even after one year, their muscles and their coordination are still developing.

Do you know about the book "Jumping from A to Z"? She wrote the "Coaching the Canine Athlete" book (not sure of the exact title) and both books got great reviews.

The jumping book is supposed to be a complete training regimen plus an overview of the body work involved, safety, and caveats about preexisting conditions (OA changes, for example) that would either rule out or require modification of the program.

The book is pretty old, so it's probably available used and cheap.
 

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In my experience, jumping a dog isn't nearly the big deal that a lot of folks make it out to be.

When the show peoples breeding practices first started showing signs of weakness, primarily in the jump, a bunch of whiners started to complain about the highth of the jumps in OB. Sure, there were some crashes when venues had really slick floors and loose mats and such, but these people added those situations in as a jump hight problem as a way of getting it lowered, as opposed to the reality.

Jumps are good for testing a few things about dogs, as if they are breaking down in the jumps, then they are structurally too weak to be bred. I agree that you shouldn't jump a couch potatoe all that much, not really fair, you never gave the dog a chance, or pups that are really young, but most people get too carried away. Most of the time if I have a dog that hurt himself, it was at home being a dumbass with one of the other dogs, not jumping in training.



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I can kind of see it both ways. Jeff, I do somewhat agree. If it's a 12 month old Malinois or level backed compact GSD that has more natural wolf-like structure, it will probably be fine with a little jumping. If it has weak structure to begin with, meh...there's some folks that won't let their dog jump up or down from the back seat of a regular car until they are 18-24 months. From a monster truck, sure, but not from a regular car. Yeah, the young dog has growing joints and it shouldn't be pushed per se, especially if the dog doesn't want to try, but at the same time, Zoso thought he was part kangaroo and would bounce up and down at our old helper till his shoulders were probably almost over my head (and I'm 5'9") especially when he was first starting. Except for lowering the long line a bit, couldn't do much for that, sorry. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is why we started agility this week. ;)
 

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If you are trying to build strength, which is certainly a part of jumping, weight pulling would probably help.

Plyometrics is used a lot for athletes in building explosiveness, i am not exactly sure how we could replicate this for canines. The basic idea, though, would be to add resistance to the jumps. (In the weight pull, unless the dog would probably not be moving very fast and the motion would be considered too slow to build explosiveness) I am thinking you could try to add weight and have the dog jump on top of things, and then have it walk down to avoid the likely injury that would occur if the weighted dog jumped off of the object.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Bob - any ideas for weather-proof crash mats? My other dog refuses jumps over 50" because she doesn't like the landing. (She used to have poor form, but it is fixed now.)

I love the weighted vest idea, but he's gotta clear the jump, so I can't have him just jumping up onto something. I ruined my other dog's jump form by doing that. The dog weighs about 48 - 52 at jumping weight (55 - 60 at winter/pet weight). I have weighted vests with removable 1/2 lb and 1 lb weights. Any ideas on how much weight would be OK when using a crash mat?
 

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I don't know that I would be comfortable with putting weight on a dog for jumping other than having it jump up and then a controlled dismount as Sam suggested. It kind of seems like having an "overweight" dog jump and land. I would be more think keeping the weight bearing stuff for low impact activites or applied as Sam suggested might be a little safer. I can jump down off my deck a couple of feet empty handed no problem - I would be saying "ouch" if I had a big bag of groceries and tried the same thing. I think adding weight might affect the "C of G" of the dog and affect his balance and how he lands.
 

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heheheh - I kinda thought that would be your answer ....:p
I don't really see the need for weighted vests in the first place - dogs either jump or they don't - but you do see alot of people trying to do "sporty" things with rescue dogs that just don't have the genetics to withstand the swear and tear. I just don't see why people would try and keep theirdogs lean for their health and then weight them down and have them jump. Dogs land on their carpus and carpal injuries can be a career ender.....I want to keep them sound and working for as long as I can.

I have never gone along with the "don't jump them/work them/ run them until they are X # of age"- because they are either sound or they aren't. We start out dogs early and have very few unsoundness problems.

The OP posted that the dog wouldn't jump over a certain height so that makes me think he ain't up to the job period and is probably not built for jumping anyway so why add a weighted vest which I still hold is a stupid idea. Dogs that are really heavy in the front end are not usually great jumpers so why add weight there? We are all entitled to our own stupid ideas of what we thnk is a stupid idea:smile:

I won't teach mine to jump as they do it naturally - fences, gates, kennels - landing be damned! only weight I have seen them carry is whatever swag they have nailed - usually somethng small and furry. I am usually in hot pursuit and my fence jumping days are behind me - I don't land so well at all! I better get off the 'puter as we have a big T-storm a brewing and I just spend 200 buck getting the compuer fixed - don't need to blow it again!

Don't be jumping any fences now! if you wreck something we might have to shoot ya - bye for now:smile:
Lynn
 

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I don't really see the need for weighted vests in the first place - dogs either jump or they don't
Lynn
The dog is jumping, she wants to increase the height that in can clear by conditioning it. I don't think dogs are any different than us in that the only way to increase strength, endurance, or explosiveness is through stress and recovery. Adding weight or resistance would further stress the dog. Of course you could jump the dog over and over at its natural body weight, but if it is already clearing that height easily the training is more geared towards increasing the dogs endurance instead of its verticle. It would be similar to doing 800 yard intervals when you are trying to get a better 40 yard dash...

I dont have the means to find a safe plyo/ power lifting type work out for my dog, but I think something along the lines of controlled jumps (to minimize the landing impact)/ weight pull and swimming would be the way to go.
 

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The OP posted that the dog wouldn't jump over a certain height so that makes me think he ain't up to the job period and is probably not built for jumping anyway
The OP said "He is currently clearing 58". So he's coming close to clearing 5 feet. I doubt the dog can do that if he's not built for jumping, they are just trying to add more height.

Heck, I've met MANY dogs who are considered really good jumpers who can't jump 58 inches. The French Ring hurdle, which people usually get all excited about when a dog jumps it, is "only" 1.2 meters or approx 4 feet.
 

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The dog is jumping, she wants to increase the height that in can clear by conditioning it. I don't think dogs are any different than us in that the only way to increase strength, endurance, or explosiveness is through stress and recovery. Adding weight or resistance would further stress the dog. Of course you could jump the dog over and over at its natural body weight, but if it is already clearing that height easily the training is more geared towards increasing the dogs endurance instead of its verticle. It would be similar to doing 800 yard intervals when you are trying to get a better 40 yard dash...

I dont have the means to find a safe plyo/ power lifting type work out for my dog, but I think something along the lines of controlled jumps (to minimize the landing impact)/ weight pull and swimming would be the way to go.
Do you think interval training with increased weight/resistance would increase the verticle or would you have to incorporate the jumping with wiehgt to do that?
 

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The OP said "He is currently clearing 58". So he's coming close to clearing 5 feet. I doubt the dog can do that if he's not built for jumping, they are just trying to add more height.

Heck, I've met MANY dogs who are considered really good jumpers who can't jump 58 inches. The French Ring hurdle, which people usually get all excited about when a dog jumps it, is "only" 1.2 meters or approx 4 feet.
I missed the 58" part- my bad- apologies to the OP!
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
4' jump is a big deal?! Where is the laughing smily when I need it? I guess that would be pretty big with a non-jumper or a less than sound dog. (Not to offend anyone here... apologies in advance)

I guess I'm dreaming of consistent world record jumps (67+). He's 4 bars away and at a plataeu (or his max??). Then again he had plataeued (sp?) down at 44." When he started clearing 50" easy I decided to keep him. (He was a foster.)

OK, I will give drag weights a go. I have a harness and stuff for it. Swimming is going to be rough unless I get a sitter.

An agility person says having the dog walk backwards is good for jumping. any thoughts?

I have to do some drive building too. For a disc, he jumps up to 52." Switch to a ball and I get another 6." I haven't done drive buiilding with the ball this year yet. Maybe I can get an inch or so more with higher ball drive?

The other dog will jump up onto a wall or something higher than 50" but refuse to jump down. She refuses to jump over 50" over a hurdle so my logic says the landings aren't comfy. She used to have a VERY steep jump angle and took some hard landings last spring. I spent last year working on her jump ar. It is much improved, but she doesn't know it.

I forgot what I was going to say and I'm in a rush. I'll check back tomorrow and hopefully remember.
 

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Anne, the mats I've seen used at the Incredable Dog Challenge were thick (4-6 in) of foam with a vinyl cover. Similar to a gym mat only thicker. I would think an apholstry (sp) shop could easily make one.
 
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