Drivers Ed 101: Learning to Drive Into the Distance Zone

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Drivers Ed 101:

Learning to Drive Into the Distance Zone

Driver’s Education 101 is the first class in learning to drive at a distance! In this class, we will teach our dogs to drive into the distance zone! We will go over foundation exercises including shadow handling, targeting using toys and targets to teach cues and distance. We will use toys, targets and cones to work the groundwork exercises that will teach your dog to follow your body language, learn your verbal cues and understand motion. We will go over how to teach directional cues- here, switch, out and in. These groundwork exercises help you and your dog become comfortable with distance and learning to drive away from you with confidence. Then we start with 1 hoop or jump and learn how to work distance with 1 obstacle and then add another one!

Lisa Schmit has developed a comprehensive and effective training program to teach distance. The goal of our training program is to instill knowledge, confidence and skills to work away from your dog. We make learning to drive into the distance zone positive and fun! This class is designed to give you the foundation level information you need to successfully teach distance.

In this class I will be performing these exercises with my puppy Inspire! You will see the actual learning process of how I train my pup. I will also use my advanced dogs for some exercises to show you that even very advanced dogs still need a refresher on these exercises. I have never had a dog understand my cues and body language as a pup/young dog as Inspire does and I attribute this to the new groundwork exercises that I have done! He has amazing distance already. I am so excited about our agility journey and would love to share some of the great foundation exercises I did with him. This class is great for puppies over 4 months old as well as older dogs that need to learn these skills and more advanced teams that want a “tune-up”.

This class is a self-paced class which means than you will have access to all material as soon as your register. However, the lectures are organized by skill so it is highly encouraged to go through each lesson step by step!! Don’t rush the training process.

There are 15 Skill Sections with over 50 instructional videos!

Lessons include

  • Lectures on Cues, Distance, how to use toys, rewards and more
  • Shadow-Handling
  • Toy Targeting to teach Cues, Directionals and Distance
  • Elevated Foot Target to Teach Cues, Directionals and Distance
  • Cone Work to teach Cues and Distance
  • 1 Hoop or Jump Work
  • 2 Hoops or Jumps

You will have 6 months to post video and questions for feedback and access to all course material for 1 yr.


You will learn

  • To teach your dog your cueing system
  • To teach your dog targeting skills
  • To build and increase distance skills
  • To teach your dog to move ahead of you
  • To teach your dog to work laterally away from you
  • To teach your dog your turning cues
  • To teach your dog to read your body language, verbal cues and motion
  • To teach your dog obstacle commitment

We will be using targets, toys, cones, and 1-2 hoops or jumps to work the exercises in this class.


Open to all dogs over 4 months of age.


Minimum equipment; non-slippery elevated foot target (I use feed bucket), 3 cones and 2 hoops or jumps

Here is a video of Inspire's first approved Bonus Run at 2.5 years old! In NADAC, you get extra points and awards for staying behind a line or in a box :)

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Your Instructor

Lisa Schmit, PhD, CCFT, CPMP
Lisa Schmit, PhD, CCFT, CPMP

Lisa is a Certified Pet Massage Practitioner, FITPAWS Master Trainer, Certified Canine Fitness Trainer and a member of Bobbie Lyon’s K9 Fit Team. She gives agility, conditioning and massage seminars across the continent.

She is one of the most accomplished handlers in NADAC. Her consistent, clear positive approach to dog training is evidence with her continual success with multiple dogs! Lisa has come home from the NADAC Championships with 10 trophies with 5 different dogs. She has finished in Overall Top 3 at NADAC Champs 21 times with 9 different dogs including her Brittany and Aussie. Nine of her dogs have over 150 NATCHES, over 35 Speed Stars. Eight of her dogs have 140 Bonus Runs (requires big distance skills). Her dogs are consistently in the Top 10 every year and in most categories in the NADAC Hall of Fame. In September 2018, Tandem earned the coveted Purple MODSQUAD award--Master of Distance and Speed which requires high level distance handling and speed. He is the 15thdog in the world to earn this award. JP7 achieved his Silver MODSQUAD in Dec 2018. Revolution only need one more bonus to achieve this award also. At the 2018 NADAC Championships, Tandem was the NADAC World Large Vet Dog Champion and NADAC Large Vet Dog Champion. JP7 was NADAC World Starter Stakes Reserve Champion and NADAC Reserve Champion Starter Stakes (high level distance class) and Distance Bonus Cup Champion. Revolution brought home 1stPlace Team Trophy. Here is a link to 2018 Champs Highlights Video: the 2017 NADAC Championships, Revolution was Reserve Champion, JP7 achieved 4 sashes in Starter Stakes, and Tandem and Synergy also made it to finals. Amazingly, in 2018 and 2017, her four dogs earned 26 NATCHES and 10 Speed Stars each year! Talk about being consistent at a high levelJIn 2015, Tandem won the highest number of Bonus Points Trophy in Starter Stakes. From 2008-20011, Moxie and Lisa won their class at champs! In 2007, Expedite won the Skilled Veteran Class and in 2006 Haley (Brittany) won Double Digit Class. To view a complete list of accomplishments, videos of runs and photos please visit To view some bonus’ runs

Lisa is a consummate learner. She continues to take classes and attend seminars whenever possible. She continues to evaluate her training and adjusts accordingly. She puts on many seminars across the continent and in doing so, meets lots of different teams with different issues. This has taught her to be open minded, to think on her feet and outside the box! She loves to be challenged and to help people succeed.

Lisa’s info: [email protected] Newsletter:

Frequently Asked Questions

How long do I have access to the course?
You will have 6 months to post video and questions for feedback and access to all course material for 1 yr. The school reserves the right to modify, update or remove this class at any time.