Doing the Labby Limbo for Dog Leg and Core Strength

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We are up to the letter “L” in our A to Z Challenge and we’re talking about one of our favorite exercises for our dogs – what we call the Labby Limbo.  We discovered this move by accident when our dog Jack was ducking under the low rail of a park fence.  As he moved below the rail, we could actually see him engage his leg and core muscles throughout a full range of motion.


How to Do the Labby Limbo

The Labby Limbo movement requires that the dog navigate under a bar that is low enough to force them to squat down in order to clear the bar.   You don’t want the bar to be positioned too low or else the dog will have to crawl on the ground (which removes the leg aspect) nor too high that they can scoot under it without having to lower their body.  Once you have the correct height for your dog, have them scoot under the bar several times, back and forth.

Benefits of the Labby Limbo

Leg Strength: The Labby Limbo is very similar to the human squat and it works both the front and back legs—the front limbs when entering the bar and the back limbs when exiting from under the bar.  Notice how Jack’s back legs are flexed and working as he comes out from underneath?  It is a great way to make sure that your dog’s hind legs are properly exercised.

Core strength:  Although it is hard to tell from the picture, Jack needs to brace through his core to stabilize his torso as he moves under the bar.  This builds core strength and specifically teaches core engagement while moving—a very valuable skill for both humans and dogs.

Coordination: This move requires coordination to judge and navigate the obstacle. Practicing it regularly will improve your dog’s coordination and overall athleticism.



Once your dog gets the hang of this, there are some simple progressions to make it more challenging..

Lower the bar. Or find a lower obstacle.  This forces a deeper squat.

Add resistance.   Jack uses the K9 Fit Vest, which provides a safe and comfortable way to increase the intensity of most exercises by increasing the muscular load.

Vary the rep scheme.  We like to do sets of 4 back and forth for a total of 8 passes under the bar.  Start with just a few reps and work up to a more challenging number.


Give the Labby Limbo a try for 4-6 weeks and you should notice an improvement in your dogs strength, stamina, and, perhaps even an added bounce in their step!  Even better.  Do the Labby Limbo with them.


Stay tuned for our upcoming A to Z Challenge “U” post which will show how to make the Labby Limbo even more fun (and hard).




I know there’s not much mischief in this post, but the Monday Mischief Blog Hop, hosted by Snoopy’s Dog Blog, Alfie’s Blog and My Brown Newfies is our favorite Hop, so we couldn’t miss it. We will be back with plenty of mischief when the A to Z Challenge is over.






We’re joining the A to Z Challenge and keeping our own Blog Hop of all our A to Z posts. Feel free to join the Hop with your A to Z Challenge post!


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  1. I wish more people wanted to active with their dogs because dogs like exercise, and people need it, too.

  2. That is such a fun workout… Kyra can get very low as I taught her how to crawl when she was a baby!! lol
    Christine & Riley recently posted…A to Z ~ L: Leashes…How Many Is Too Many?My Profile

  3. How pawsome! Your canines certainly are slim and fit!

    Great to come by your blog again!! 😀

    Lots of Woofs from Earl an I at Earl’s World!

  4. Wow! I can’t imagine Sherman and Leroy doing that. I think they lack the coordination skills and I could just see them laying down! Maybe Jack could show them how it’s done!
    Jen recently posted…Breaking RoutineMy Profile

    • Yeah, you’ve got to find just the right height. If it’s too low, he won’t try it and Maggie is short enough to walk right under that same fence. I’m sure Jack would love to show them!
      mkob recently posted…Doing the Labby Limbo for Dog Leg and Core StrengthMy Profile

  5. I was going to write that we don’t have a lot of places for limbo, but that’s not true. We are surrounded by woods and I was just watching the dogs go over and under things yesterday. Of course, they were supposed to be coming back to me so that we could go inside, but at least they got some great exercise – thanks for the change in perspective. Even Sydney did it carefully.
    Kimberly Gauthier recently posted…Liver, Gizzards and Hearts Loaf to Take a Break from Raw Dog FoodMy Profile

  6. Jack would make an excellent canine commando – he’d pass bootcamp with flying colors.

  7. Why is it as I read this post I’m humming Harry Belafonte’s “Limbo Rock” song in my head 🙂 ?

  8. Hello there, the Huskies sent us over here! I try to walk with my dog several miles everyday, he and I both benefit from it. In winter we snowshoed a couple times a day and usually for about 40 minutes each time out. We are gonna go back and read your other tips now. Thanks for the informative blog!
    Buddy recently posted…It Has Been AwhileMy Profile

  9. We have a lot of Labby Limbo going on with both dogs – they adore diving under the bed. Limbo to a crawl, and then a reverse on the other side of the bed. A game for both, often combined with trampoline action on top of the bed before and afterwards, and sprint races between the two bedrooms. What a pair 🙂
    Jen recently posted…Stylish Canine’s The A to Z of Things Dogs Love: The Kitchen #AtoZChallengeMy Profile

  10. We love setting up obstacle courses and fun things for our dog. He seems to enjoy it too. 🙂 Love this post!!
    Amanda at His and Her Hobbies
    Amanda recently posted…His and Her Travel Review: Lone Pine Koala SanctuaryMy Profile

  11. This would be more fun with music.
    jan recently posted…Reunion of man and his loyal dog who waited outside hospital for 8 days (video)My Profile

  12. LOL! My corgis don’t have too put much limbo effort into getting under low things 😉
    Taryn recently posted…Monday Mischief: Wait for Me!My Profile

  13. Where do you come up with all of these exercises? I’d have never thought of doggy limbo!
    M. K. Clinton recently posted…Squirrel SeasonMy Profile

  14. You do the Labby Limbo so well. I had to teach that to Norman when he was recovering from his ACL surgery. It really helped him to get his strength back in his hind leg.
    Sand Spring Chesapeakes recently posted…Monday Mischief~Remains To Be SeenMy Profile

  15. We haven’t tried limbo yet, but its a great idea!
    Beagles and Bargains recently posted…M is for Make Your Own Dog Toys #atozchallengeMy Profile

  16. That looks like a really good one. I bet my knuckleheads would try and jump over.
    2 brown dawgs recently posted…Training A Cold Blind On A Warm Spring DayMy Profile

  17. Great job Jack

    That could be a great move to learn for sneaking under the kids beds to see if there’s any goodies there for me?! Tee Hee

    I hope you’re having a fun day,

    Your pal Snoopy 🙂
    snoopy recently posted…Monday Mischief – It’s My Birthday – Free Blogpaws TicketMy Profile

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