Why Warm Up? At the beginning of agility class we will always do a warm up. Occasionally students ask us why this is done.. If you watch professional athletes before a competition they don’t go from being sedentary to suddenly exercising without first gently easing their muscles into the activity. With dog sports the warm up gives your dog an opportunity to stretch their muscles and get limber before starting to actively use those muscles for jumping, climbing, and doing tight turns. Please remember that doing the warm up is important. Take your time and make sure you and your dog are both ready to start class. Practice your obedience behaviours like stay and down, but also moves like walking flip turns that start to get core muscles engaged in movement. A reminder that you should never ask your dog to go on any equipment unless instructed to by your trainer. The warm up is not “free time” to use the equipment. Another benefit of the warm up is that it gives you an opportunity to reconnect with your dog. Often students arrive to class after a hectic day at work and are feeling frazzled. You need to give yourself time to focus on why you are in class; to continue developing your bond with your dog in a fun sport that you enjoy playing together.