what my clients have to say
Ali Calkins has made a difference to a number of horses and their riders! Here are a few shared experiences from her happy clients.
“I’ve been with Ali for a few years now and have nothing but positive things to say. The horse care is phenomenal and I never have to worry when I’m not there; everything is always taken care of and communicated clearly to me. My mare, who is quickly approaching FEI levels, has been in training the last few years as well and has been produced slowly and correctly with kindness and compassion. Lessons with Ali are also very valuable and tailored to each individual with clear and easy to understand instruction. Great barn atmosphere with lovely horses and riders. You won’t find a better group of people and horses!”
“I am a rather timid rider and Ali has a great ability to inspire confidence and to know exactly how and when to encourage something new, and when to provide reassurance and support. Most importantly she is able to verbalize specific corrections to riding errors that are meaningful to the individual. Together we develop words that immediately translate to a visualization of what is required, and she will repeatedly strive to modify those words and visualization so that my mind and body are able to then do exactly what is required. Her constant advising me on subtle modifications of position during a lesson then translate to immediate positive responses from the horse. As a result I learn how my body must feel to communicate effectively with the horse, and to get the appropriate response, such as having him get on the bit. I feel that I am finally learning how to ride!”
“Ali is a terrific instructor, who provides outstanding instruction with great attention to detail. She challenges and supports my daughter each and every lesson. If you are looking for the highest quality trainer, Ali Is an excellent choice!”
“You won’t find a better trainer than Ali. She genuinely cares about the horses and her students. When she teaches, she explains why a gesture, posture, etc. is necessary instead of just saying to do it. I wouldn’t go to anyone else – she’s the best.”
“Ali has shown me a whole new side to what it means to ride a horse. She helped re-educate me after years out of the saddle and takes the time to explain everything in a way I can understand. After months of taking lessons with her, I knew she would be the right trainer to help me find the right (first) horse for me and he would be in the best care possible at Forward Strides. Since purchasing Dante, she has helped me grow as a rider and him as a dressage horse!”
“Forward Strides has been a great fit for our quirky OTTB mare. The barn is pristine, and the care top notch. As a trainer, Ali really has a way of understanding that each horse is different and can tailor a lesson to meet those needs. She is very positive and encouraging while still making sure that you meet all your goals. We highly recommend her for anybody, from beginner riders to those struggling with training issues.”