Great news, everyone!
I have discovered much over the last few days re: soft turns off the dog walk.
This is what I have learnt:
1. Both a friend from Facebook AND Silvia Trkman don’t handle the turn until either one stride after the dog walk OR after the dog has hit the contact. Both therefore say that it’s perfectly ok to not cue early in this situation. Hurrah!
2. Silvia doesn’t train turns very much, in fact, especially with Bu, as this would cause her to shorten her stride. Mostly she does straight exits and occasionally does a turn or come to hand to a different obstacle off to the side, but not until the dog has already hit the contact.
3. She usually has a straight obstacle ahead so they don’t anticipate the turn, and then she turns them.
Which means that I now get to do lots lots more straight exits, with only sometimes doing a curve, but not until she’s exited the DW. YAY! I like straight exits.
It also means that at some point in the not-too-far-distant-future, I should look at training harder turns, as I suspect a 90 degree turn will require collection for Lu, and if they throw another exit at us like they did at the Croydon trial (with a bar straight ahead about 5m away, and the actual bar you were meant to take about 7m away on a 90 degree angle) then she’s going to need to be able to do those kinds of turns…. But first! Confidence and full extended running back with straight exits! THEN OCCASIONALLY a curved exit… And then training the hard turns.