Author Topic: New Course Design !*&%&*  (Read 2563 times)

Brenda George

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #30 on: November 11, 2017, 05:20:16 PM »
I ditto Gina & Vicki.  There are pleanty of other venues in my area that I chose to not participate in with my dogs.  I could probably Trial every weekend in one of the "other" venues...however I chose to do only NADAC because of the flowing courses.  I question how the bonus runs will survive on the tight, technical courses.  I haven't been seeing anyone doing bones recently!!!!
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Linda W. Anderson

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #31 on: November 11, 2017, 05:48:03 PM »
I ditto Gina & Vicki.  There are pleanty of other venues in my area that I chose to not participate in with my dogs.  I could probably Trial every weekend in one of the "other" venues...however I chose to do only NADAC because of the flowing courses.  I question how the bonus runs will survive on the tight, technical courses.  I haven't been seeing anyone doing bones recently!!!!
I am wondering as well.   I'm afraid my 11 yr. old bonus dog isn't up for those type of courses.  I'd hate to have to stop doing bonuses, but...
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Amanda Nelson

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #32 on: November 11, 2017, 05:52:48 PM »
Iím doing a quick reply off my phone, but I will write something a little longer once I get back to my computer. :-) but as Chris said in an above post, most all of these courses in question are ďoldĒ courses that have been re-worked.  And as far as bonuses, I will be able to know more as more numbers come in, but there already has been an increase in the the number of bonuses submitted since Championships.
I will get something a little longer posted when I can boot up my computer later. :-)
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garypaula

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #33 on: November 13, 2017, 10:09:16 AM »
It has been a lot of fun reading all the responses to this issue.  I have only been doing NADAC for about eight years; but even in that time, I have noticed course types ebb and flow.  Chances, for example (particularly at the Novice level) seems to have gone from fairly difficult to pretty easy and back to fairly difficult during that time.  When new things come in (e.g. barrels), there is a lot of complaining.  But after a very short time, people adapt and actually end up liking the "new" things, in most cases.  The other thing I have noticed is that the dogs don't seem to care at all.  The handlers may complain, but the dog just goes out and does what you ask them to do.  And isn't that what it is all about?  In my opinion, NADAC just keeps getting better and better.

Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #34 on: November 14, 2017, 10:37:32 AM »
I am not a fan of hoops wraps, and we don't see them often here.  In fact, Champs (in the DD round) was probably the first one I had seen in years.  Yes, they are better than a wrap on a jump, which is a MAJOR reason I don't do other venues, however, while I don't like them, I can power through them.  Are they fun?  NO!  I have one dog that believes if she sees an obstacle, she must take it, so for her, a hoop wrap means going through the hoop and then back through it, unless I pull her WAAAY out so she can't back track through it.  It is a thing that I have to be conscious of with her but oh well.... 

Another reason I don't like them is that I feel that it is making such a tight turn around the standard that dogs are prone to slipping, especially on turf.  And, YES, you should train your dog to be conscious of their body and maybe try to handle it better, but we all know that there are handlers and there are dogs that simply don't do it....  I personally like the flowiness of the NADAC courses and tight turns like that are not my preference.  That being said, if I see it, I will simply have to handle it....
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AndreaEntin

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #35 on: November 15, 2017, 05:50:24 AM »
Well put GaryPaula!

Andrea

lorriemaxx

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #36 on: November 15, 2017, 07:57:01 PM »
Well, we had the opposite discussion from what seems to be the norm.  Our group from Halloween and last weekend talked about how much fun it was to see some "new, old" challenges back in the courses, and how the courses for a while got a little...easy for the experienced dogs.  Have to say, I've been doing NADAC since 2003, and nothing I saw in the past two trials was anything I hadn't seen before, just something(s) I hadn't seen in a while.  We had a blast discussing handling options and seeing what worked.  How great to have double run format so we can "fix" it when it doesn't go according to plan!

I did try the bonus in Regular, and yes, it was tough.  No, I didn't get it (bad handler!).  Doesn't mean I won't try it again though.  Anyone who is trying bonuses is definitely not in the sport for the Qs!

I know change is hard, but as someone said, everyone said that about hoops, and barrels, and...  They turned out okay - give the new (old) course designs a chance too.


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Lin Battaglia

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #37 on: November 28, 2017, 07:21:37 PM »
I have been doing agility for 30 years. I'm an instructor with 130 NATCHes. I'm very educated in the sport. Doing NADAC since it started. The sport has evolved and training requires more skills from dogs and handlers. Course design requires all skills be learned by the dog and handlers.

I am sad to see some of the course designs of late. Not at all like the NADAC I love. Courses are tight, jerky, congested and the dog has to run collected a big part of the time. My small dog does fine but my fast BCs aren't doing well. I hope the current course designs will be reconsidered for the dogs sake.

« Last Edit: November 29, 2017, 08:03:50 AM by Lin Battaglia »

MoabDiane

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #38 on: November 28, 2017, 08:01:22 PM »
I wasn't going to enter into this discussion, but....here I am.

For the most part, I'll all for new and improved and changed course designs!  I like challenges.
However.  I've seen several courses lately where dog does a pinwheel (or four in a "circle"), then comes back to do a serp/180 in that same area.
I don't think this follows NADAC's general philosophy of "flow" - it isn't terribly "herky-jerky" but it necessitates collection in the midst of extension.
A change from one to the other is fine.  I just don't happen to like this particular sequence.
My two cents' worth....

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Amy McGovern

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #39 on: November 28, 2017, 08:06:45 PM »
I also wasn't going to enter the discussion but we have done two shows in the last two weeks and they were very different.  Generally the flow was the usual NADAC style.  We really enjoyed both shows!  But one course (open regular) had a very difficult opening sequence:  hoop to a hoop wrap and back to the start hoop.  From there it was flow-y (is that a word?).  The open dogs (mine included!) had a really hard time with the wrap coming up so early in the sequence.  I think it would have been easier later but I don't know for sure since we didn't have that to test :) I learned I need to train for this, at least if it is going to be a regular thing.  She knows hoop wraps but she took the wrap at obstacle #2 to be a correction of her start line stay and she said nope, not doing it.  Baby dog brains :) Anyway, not a complaint.  Just observing what I saw of that wrap. 
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dogrsqr

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #40 on: November 29, 2017, 07:07:56 AM »
I would just echo what Lin and Diane said.  I don't mind a wrap, it's some of the other things I'm seeing that are bothering me.  I'm sometimes seeing some obstacles pretty close together (the off course possibilities) and some very weird angles.  Maybe there's some course building problems?  I'm not complaining because I don't want to train something new; I'm complaining because some of those things I just don't want to make my dog do. 

The thing that most people don't understand is that years ago when those courses seemed so easy, the standard course times were tighter and that was the challenge.  As I've watched the last few trials I've been at it seems that NADAC now favors the mediocre speed/accurate dogs and speed has kind of gone by the wayside.  So while the courses may be getting more technical, if you have a mediocre speed dog with little distance they aren't as big of a challenge as they are for faster dogs with bigger distance.

When it comes to running in collection I feel that it is actually better for my dog to run on a totally collected course than one that shifts back and forth.  She will easily recognize total collection and adjust, but shifting back and forth is not easy.

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Chris Nelson

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #41 on: November 29, 2017, 09:57:52 AM »
So my abbreviated thoughts on all this.

What would be your suggestion.   
The courses we had been running were too easy,  I have years of trial reports to back that up,  people were bored and left.   Heck I was bored.

Maybe we can ease up a bit and make them a little easier,  but we have been getting a lot of good reports on the courses that people are actually challenged again and actually have something to train,  so I donít think they are going to change too drastically.

Times will be adjusted in June.

And my final thought which is probably not going to be well received.  The majority of the complaint we get are from the people that do not want to teach their dogs to slow down at all.   Itís just go go go and any time they have to turn itís the end of the world.
None of the people in this thread are guilty of it,  but I see it a lot.

I got an email last week saying how terrible a course was,   But then in the same email how much they loved a different course.   The difference?  The second course was a drag race,  you did a big circle, barely ever turned beyond 90 degrees and just ran back and forth from one side of the ring to another.   And that is what they think is an excellent Nadac course which makes me really sad because thatís never what Nadac was supposed to be but that is what people have turned it in to in their mind.

Speed is a factor in Nadac which gets you bigger awards,  not a design element that rules over everything else with no regard to any other skill.


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KarissaKS

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #42 on: November 29, 2017, 11:39:59 AM »
I appreciate your thought process, Chris, and the stance you are taking on these changes.

Quote
So while the courses may be getting more technical, if you have a mediocre speed dog with little distance they aren't as big of a challenge as they are for faster dogs with bigger distance.

This applies to ALL courses in ALL organizations. Someone who runs a slower dog is always going to have an easier time getting around a course than someone with a fast dog. That doesn't mean that courses should be built just for fast dogs, to reduce the challenges to be more in line with what slower dogs experience. Faster dogs are harder to get through the same courses by nature of their speed, off courses come up faster, bars are more likely to drop because they flatten out. This is the nature of agility. People always think they want "one of the fast dogs," but be careful what you wish for, because then you have to learn how to handle those fast dogs through courses that should involve more than serpentines and pinwheels. Agility should be about extension & collection, and going between the two, otherwise you may as well just play at lure coursing and watch your dog run.
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mephalon

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #43 on: November 29, 2017, 11:49:31 AM »
Just to chime in and respond to this "Someone who runs a slower dog is always going to have an easier time getting around a course than someone with a fast dog."

That is not true-  all types of dogs have their challenges- please don't discount the challenges of running a slower dog.  I have run dogs where time is not an issue (but off courses were his specialty) and now I run a dog that time is our biggest obstacle-  running the dog with time challenges can be exhausting mentally and physically.   Both can be hard and challenging- just different.   

It is definitely not easier to get around a course with a dog that is not naturally all that fast (yes maybe off courses are easier to prevent) but it  can be exhausting running a slower dog.   And trust me it is pretty disheartening to come off the course with a technically clean and efficient run where your dog was running in extension but still be over time.

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BeckyAH

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Re: New Course Design !*&%&*
« Reply #44 on: November 29, 2017, 06:11:26 PM »
Just to chime in and respond to this "Someone who runs a slower dog is always going to have an easier time getting around a course than someone with a fast dog."

That is not true-  all types of dogs have their challenges- please don't discount the challenges of running a slower dog.  I have run dogs where time is not an issue (but off courses were his specialty) and now I run a dog that time is our biggest obstacle-  running the dog with time challenges can be exhausting mentally and physically.   Both can be hard and challenging- just different.   

It is definitely not easier to get around a course with a dog that is not naturally all that fast (yes maybe off courses are easier to prevent) but it  can be exhausting running a slower dog.   And trust me it is pretty disheartening to come off the course with a technically clean and efficient run where your dog was running in extension but still be over time.

I don't think they meant to imply that there were no challenges with a slower dog  (at least I hope not!) - just that the challenges weren't really the same challenges - or necessarily for off course potentials that come with tighter and more technical courses.

I run both.    There are challenges and difficulties in both training and trialing with both.   The simple facts of the matter are:

a-) if the slower dog starts headed for an off course obstacle or misses a turn I have more time to correct her path/get her back on the right one before she's taken the wrong obstacle and accumulated faults- 

and : b-) Unless I have been very, very tight elsewhere, the time it takes to do so will give me time faults.

Conversely, the faster dog?  If she's on her way to the wrong obstacle, she's taken it and she's accumulating off course faults.  But she's NEVER going to have a run in which her only faults are for being over SCT.   

It is, as with everything, a trade off.   You learn to train and work on what you need based on the dog you have and it changes with every dog you bring to the game.

(Also what kind of time adjustments are happening in June? I feel like I missed something, somewhere?)
« Last Edit: November 29, 2017, 06:19:47 PM by BeckyAH »