Canine Core Ball
Has reached our shores! Cape Animal Physiotherapy and Canine Concepts have pulled together their resources and knowledge to present the latest in canine exercise, that is fast taking off overseas.
1) You don’t need lots of space
2) Not dependent on the weather
3) It has no impact on joints
4) Dogs with certain injuries will benefit
5) Can prevent muscular injuries especially in the sporting and working dog
6) Suitable for any age
7) Only short sessions are required for a good workout
Any active dog or canine sport participants (i.e. agility, Schutzhund, showing, dancing etc.) should possess good core muscle strength; that is, good strength in the back and abdominal region, including the smaller “set” of stabilizing muscles that are present in every joint. If a dog’s core muscles are not strong, the dog will utilize muscles which are not adapted for that specific purpose, which will lead to fatigue, pain and injury. Dogs with weak core muscles might compensate with their rear and begin to have problems with tight muscles, muscle strains or other issues. If the core is well developed the ‘mover muscles’ can perform at optimal level and execute even more comprehensive movements without injury, which means better performance !
Core Ball exercises involves a large egg or peanut shaped vinyl ball. Round shaped balls could be harmful. Working on these Balls does not alter the dog’s standing biomechanics and puts no pressure on the joints, which is good for dogs with injuries or the older dog that cannot go for long walks anymore.
These balls also challenge the dog’s body because they are an unstable surface. The dog’s muscles immediately start to work to keep him from falling off. Add an exercise to that, and you’ve just increased the intensity of the movement. Sounds easy? Physiotherapist, Marinette Teeling, will put the owners though some exercises to experience just how difficult it is! Balance is affected by head position, head movement, weight shifting, vision, and surface. Standing and balancing on one leg may be easy for some people, but try to maintain your balance while you close your eyes and move your head from side to side or up and down.
Core Ball Exercises can be done in the comfort of your home – even in front of the fireplace, if you like – so neither you or your dog has to tackle the cold and wet winter mornings and evenings. Having a dog comes with the responsibility of providing him with sufficient exercise. When we don’t allow them the opportunity to be physically stimulated – they become frustrated and find ways to entertain themselves, and it is usually these behaviours that we find irritating or costly…with Core Ball Exercises this will not happen.
Puppies to Golden Oldies can participate. I started with my own puppy at 8 weeks on the peanut – mostly to try and prevent carsickness – and it worked! It got him use to the rocking and rolling motion of the car and taught him to stabilize himself. He now loves the ball and can’t wait to get on!
Each dog is handled individually and an exercise and progress program will be worked out for each dog according to their physical ability.
Instructors courses available upon request.
To prevent injuries, Canine Core Ball should not be attempted without the guidance of your vet or a qualified canine physiotherapist.
Copyright 2011: Claire Grobbelaar – Canine Concepts & Marinette Teeling – Cape Animal Physiotherapy