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Lessons with Ali are a dream come true.

I had to wait for 8 years for my dream of being able to have 'Ride With Your Mind' lessons in my own field to come true. For the last 8 years I have been an RWYM convert but I had to travel myself and my pony many miles to other yards to get my RWYM input. This was helpful, but very sporadic which made for slower progress. In desperation I tried other 'classical' trainers who could travel to my field, but I found non RWYM training unhelpful and frustrating. Then I found Ali and she said she would be prepared to travel to my area and could do this every two weeks, so my dream came true.

We had our first lesson in June 2007 and since then my riding and my pony's way of going have improved immensely. We have gone from Novice level unaffiliated dressage to winning at Elementary level and qualifying for the Regional Championships at Affiliated Dressage to Music. All this with a Highland pony with very ordinary paces. Ali is just such a good coach because she gets the balance of teaching just right, every lesson. She is encouraging, but will tell you when something going wrong is your fault. She then has the skills to explain clearly exactly what is going wrong in your body and exactly what you need to change and how to do it. She is also happy to move on to work on different areas in a lesson so you have a selection of things to practise in between lessons.

I would recommend the 'Ride With Your Mind' method of improving your riding to anyone (which I do all the time) and Ali as a brilliant coach of the method. One final thing, I had to wait for so many years to get RWYM lessons in the field that I am not going to let rain stop me, luckily Ali really will teach in all weathers if you are mad enough to want to ride in them, as the photo proves.

Claire Kinsley (Feb 2008)


I chose to go on a Mary Wanless course because I didn’t know what else to do. My horse was moving like a crab and my saddle was severely to the left and I didn’t know how or if I was ever going to correct myself.

Ali unfortunately got stuck with me most of the week, as my horse was being too naughty to go down the bottom and have a shared lesson with Mary. At the end of the week I was terrified that I wouldn’t have a chance to carry on learning RWYM until I found out that Ali was only an hours drive from me. I went every month to her weekend courses and within one lesson I was sitting straight and have been ever since. I didn’t think this would ever happen. She gives me the tools to deal with my horse when he has playing up and through that I have gained my confidence and also quite a lot of patience!!

She now teaches at my yard in Kettering and has a growing number of followers who cant believe the immediate results they get from the concept of RWYM. Not only is it the techniques that they use but also it is Ali’s way of teaching they love. She is very encouraging and patient and it doesn’t matter if your on a your 14hh hack or big Dutch warmblood. Everyone gets the same attention and time.

Thanks Ali for all your help!

Gemma Royles (Feb 2008)

My first lesson with Ali was in June 07. From the very start she made me feel that Pallo and I were not a hopeless case. Ali provided just the right amount of encouragement with many helpful suggestions to improve my riding and keeping motivation alive.

When Alison comes around the corner, on the dot as usual, with that cheery 'hello' I just know that it is going to be good learning experience again. We are a mature rider and a happy 15 year old cob ridden bitless. Alison has the knack of making us feel important and worthy of her complete attention. We have got better; I am safer in the saddle, Pallo's listening has improved, and he is going straighter. The joy of owning my horse and riding him with a good instructor like Ali always gives that lovely feeling of enjoyable anticipation.

Marianne Tims (Feb 2008)

Ali is the first riding instructor to teach me to ride properly.
Using the Mary Wanless RWYM methods she has taught me how to sit in alignment and balance. As a consequence the horses move better, my aids are more effective and my awareness of the horses' way of going has become clearer.
She has a very good eye immediately correcting imbalances in both me and the horses.
The lesson are also good fun !
Jenny Clarke (Jan 2008)

My instructor (Heather Cook from 'Croft Farm Riding Centre' in Filby) and myself went on our first RWYM course with Mary Wanless in 2006. Shortly afterwards we started having a regular lesson (fortnightly) with Ali. We went on our second course with Mary in 2007 and are booked again this year.

Heather has also been on Mary's Teacher training course, and the whole concept of RWYM has been an inspiration to her and her teaching methods. For myself, I cannot get enough of RWYM. I am so lucky because not only do I have a lesson every other week with Ali but Heather (who I have regular lessons with) helps as well !!

Ali is very, very good.

She always starts the lesson by asking what thoughts we have from the last lesson, and we work on that plus any other problems that may have cropped up. As Ali says, as soon as my horse gets the hang of one thing, it becomes his next evasion. I think this is the same for me as well !!

Ali always knows what the missing piece in the jigsaw is, and never loses patience however many times she has to tell me the same thing.

I am fifty this year, and I have been riding since I was eight (with a ten year break when my son was born). I really didn’t know how much difference RWYM could make......I am only just starting to learn properly !

During my time doing RWYM I have been through several stages of going backwards and feeling like a real novice (not even able to do rising trot properly) but I can only say that it has been worth putting up with the “downs” as the progress I am now making has made it all worthwhile.

My horse, Haegen, a 17 hh, eight year old Belgian Warmblood, prefers these methods too!

Susan Thompson (Jan 2008)