Dr. Yin’s Animal Behavior and Medicine Blog
Exercising with Your Dog: A 7 Minute New Year’s Exercise Routine for You and Your Dog
Posted On: Thursday, January 3rd, 2013
By Dr. Sophia Yin
It’s the New Year and no doubt many have vowed to exercise and get into shape. But when you wake up in the morning do you look at your dog and feel guilty that you’re working out instead of playing with him? Well, here’s a short and easy indoor workout routine that includes treats and training for your dog and exercise for you. It’s a set of short warm-up, balance and conditioning exercise that you can do up to 7 days a week either as a way to ease into the day or as a prelude to a more rigorous cardio workout like the outdoor workouts I show in Working Out With Your Dog: Quick Warm-Up Exercises for You and Your Dog.
Designed by Hideshi Okamoto of the FitnessGarage (http://www.FitnessGarage.us), this workout is meant for elite athletes as well as couch potatoes. As a physical therapist, former NCAA track couch, football conditioning coach, and coach to several Olympic athletes, Hideshi’s philosophy is to work the many inner muscles that form the support framework for your larger muscles. As a result, even though these exercises seem easy, they can improve your conditioning, decrease the likelihood of injuries, and increase your athletic performance dramatically.
How does the dog work into the exercise routine?
For this set of indoor exercises, we will be simultaneously working on down-stay exercise for your dog. As a result, we are turning the most boring dog-training exercise ever into a fun routine. As an added benefit, all of the odd exercise movements you’ll be making would usually serve as big distractions and hence excuses for your dog to get up and jump on you. But Fido will be learning that he should lay down no matter what odd movement you make. He’ll also learn that it’s fun to watch you, which will serve as encouragement for you too.
What you’ll need:
For this indoor routine, you’ll need a chair or couch, an exercise ball, and a 2 pound dumbbell + small treats for your dog. I use my dogs regular daily allotment of kibble for his training. That way he will stay trim.
Let’s get started
To see the routine, watch the following video.