Top portion of the side image showing a smiling rider on Petey, a black and white Paint horse.
 

            Testimonials

Bottom portion of the side image showing a smileing rider on Petey, a black and white Paint horse.

"I first met Leslie seven years ago when I needed some time in the saddle after recovering from a very serious riding accident. To say my confidence took a hit was an understatement! She and her wonderfully trained/reliable horses gave me the confidence I needed to get back in the saddle and ride my new horse.

Fast forward to 2017. Anyone who rides long enough knows that not all horses are created equal. They all have quirks but sometimes their quirks become your issues. Once again, I desperately needed to build my confidence. The first person I contacted was Leslie. I knew her non-judgmental, confidence building approach coupled with her well trained horses would once again get me back on track.

Leslie is an excellent horseperson, in every sense of the word. But her skills with people are just as remarkable. She is a wonderful person!! Without her help, I can honestly say I wouldn’t be riding anymore. Thanks SO much Leslie and sweetie Petey!!!!!!!!!"

Michelle K.
Lovettsville, VA


"Leslie, you are very special to me. You believed in me and helped me to become a horseman, for that I will never forget you!!!!"

Jimmy C.
Hickory, PA


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"BACK IN THE SADDLE! I had zero confidence, but a strong desire to continue riding horses. What a conflict! After a couple of falls from various horses I owned, and one fall that I am still healing from, I lost my riding confidence. So, I bought a new horse, one of the youngest, definitely the cheapest and pretty much sight unseen. Risky, huh?! I owed it to my new horse and myself to get it right. I knew if I didn’t, I would sell my horse and hang up my saddle. (which would break my heart) For the first time, I decided to hire a professional trainer/instructor, to start my new horse. I was referred to Leslie Gottesman. I read that she has trained many horses and riders over the years and she has an awesome story and resume! Leslie took “Bo” into her 30 day training program at her farm. Her goal was to figure him out, be sure he was the horse for me and that we would be safe on the trails. Her program included (but not limited to) ground work then trail work. Over the course of the program he learned critical ground manners, selftrailer loading and trail exposure. Since she offers an open door policy during training, I took advantage of that. Having a huge lack of confidence, I needed to watch her work with him to see how he would react to different things. Under her supervision, I did the same groundwork with him and was pleased with the results. He listened and was very soft. Now my confidence was coming back! Since I love to trail ride, we then hit the trails. I first rode one of Leslie’s horses who knew the trails and is a steady eddy type, and she ponied Bo. I was able to see how he would react to different obstacles such as, deer, turkey, logs, creeks, hills, etc. Perfect for training! And Bo did great! Towards the end of the program, I was trail riding my own horse with Leslie, and she was able to show me that “Bo” is the sweetest, kindest and most sensible horse I have ever had the pleasure of owning. Thank you Leslie!!"

Patty I.
Round Hill, VA


"Just wanted to thank you again. Jacob is a totally different horse since your trailer loading session with him a week ago.  I was a little nervous I wouldn't be able to replicate the ease of loading without you, but he has been a star.  We practiced loading a few days after you came out and practiced once again today, a week since our last "practice" session.  With all the rain we have had I walked up to where my trailer was parked while on Jacob and he walked right up to the trailer and put his nose on it like, "Why isn't this open, I'm ready to walk on." Once I made sure the ground was fine to practice, I went back to the barn and got him ready to practice loading. On the way up to the trailer I practiced the forward and backward cues so he had his mind on business.  Once at his trailer, he walked right on like a champ a few times.

Today was the first time my mom has seen him load this way, she just called a few minutes ago and told me, "I still can't believe he walked right on the trailer, and I saw it with my own eyes!"  Everyone that ever witnessed the hassle loading was before, cannot believe he self loads now.  We have gone from a horse that could take up to an hour to coax on with feed, multiple grooms, you name it we tried it; to pointing him at the trailer and he self loads.  As my trainer said, we have gone from begging him to get on, to him just knowing that's what he needs to do.

When it comes to horse shows, getting there shouldn't be the most stressful part.  Unfortunately that's how things had become with Jacob. We go to a horse show next week and I'm feeling so much more comfortable about getting him on the trailer. I'm sure he may still test me, but at least now I have tools.  I honestly can't thank you enough for teaching us both the skills we needed. My only regret is that I didn't find you sooner to help us."

Laura S.
Ashburn, VA


"Earlier in 2015 I purchased a 4-year old green broke horse, named Moose, with the hopes that I could foxhunt him in time. He appeared to have the right mind for the job, but I would have to provide him with the right kind of training and experience. I’m an amateur rider who can be a bit timid at times and knew I would need professional help to teach Moose his job. I called upon Leslie, with whom I had worked in the past to do the same thing when I bought another youngster. That youngster is now seven years old and is my trusty show hunter and seasoned foxhunter.

For Moose, we started out with small trail rides and evaluating his behavior – how was he with water? Logs? Thick brush? Trotting in a group? Cantering in a group? Trappy and steep terrain? Did he listen to me? I rode with Leslie all summer and through those rides Moose and I built a strong, trusting relationship. He developed confidence on the trails and became a natural so I thought I could take the next step and introduce him to the hunt trail rides held in the summer. I took Moose on our first hunt trail ride, which had about 35 horses in attendance. While Moose was a bit wide-eyed, he handled it really well, thanks to the great foundation Leslie had given us.  We then progressed to foxhunting clinics in late summer and those went extremely well. We then did an “introduction to hounds clinic” and went on a mock hunt. Moose wasn’t phased by the hounds, hunt horns, or whip cracks. Welcome to foxhunting, Baby Moose!

Leslie trained me as much as she helped train Moose. She gave me the confidence to introduce Moose to each new experience. The approach was slow and steady and it paid off in the end.

Trailer Loading
My young horse, Moose, was very good at trailer loading. But he has a bit of a puppy dog personality and will literally follow me everywhere – including off of the trailer even if I just put him on it! Leslie worked with Moose and taught him how to “auto load” – basically pointing him to the trailer and teaching him to walk right on. He learned that approach very quickly and now he “auto loads” for me everytime, which makes loading him alone much easier!
"

Shannon D.
Fairfax, VA


"Riding has been a gift-- an experience I wouldn't trade for the world. That was probably why selling Feature so sad; the nostalgia of these four years kicked in strong when he left! I wanted to thank you for everything you have done for me over the past couple of years. Having you as a teacher made my experiences even more special: you taught me patience and practice; you helped me to discover confidence and conscientiousness.

Riding began as just a hobby. I wasn't good at it. I didn't know much about it. But I liked it. Even though it isn't a hobby anymore, you have helped me to develop skills that will help me in inummerable ways in my future. I increased my skills, learned, and I deepened my liking into love and a passion. I hope you realize the enourmous impact you have had one my life and I thank you for everything you have taught me."

Christina F.
Oak Hill, VA


"Just want you to know that Forrest is loading like a champ.  He occasionally 'expresses his opinion' about loading but I just tap him on the hip and he marches right on.  We've been on 3 JPRs and he is learning and growing wiser.  We have won a 2nd and a 4th which were total surprises but he was super good that day. I thank you so much for that lesson.  People are amazed that in 2.5hrs he went from refusing to load to self-loading.  I sing your praises and recommend you any time someone has a training issue."

Justine G.
Lovettsville, VA


"Again, so pleased with how you turned Resa into a well-mannered horse.  Trailered her over to a state park with a boarder who, saw me riding Resa on the farm road and asked if I wanted to go trail riding because he needed someone to ride with.  In the back of my mind I remember the horrible time I had loading Resa the one time I trailered out to go trail riding and it took 4 hours to get her back on the trailer.  This time, she loaded the first time I asked on the way out and on the way back I just had to ask twice.  She was so good!  The trip home she didn’t get off the trailer all sweaty for nerves like she has in the past.  I am just so pleased and happy with her.  Thank you for all your efforts.  We had such a great time, too.  Resa was so happy to get out."

Jodie B.
Callaway, MD


"'Went on trail alone today for about 15 min - Sonny was completely wonderful.  You did a great job with him!"

Lori M.
McLean, VA


"'All of a sudden our horse decided to stop loading'.....but what we really learned was that maybe he was telling us before he stopped loading that he was actually unhappy in the trailer.  Leslie, through her consultative approach, helped us understand the relationship between rider and horse beyond the saddle.  The relationship continues outside of the ring and there is a "YING-YANG" energy between them.  After understanding the issue and horse, her hands-on approach is very effective and accomplished our desired end result in a very positive way.  She exceeded our expectations and we are now all "believers" in her program and methodology!  Thank you Miles of Smiles Training."

The Rhee Family
Leesburg, VA


"I can't believe how well Milo did on the hunt trail ride yesterday! It was a bit more intense than advertised but he was a superstar!!!! He listened to me so well and I really felt like we were a team. I'm so glad I've been taking those lessons with you because it definitely helped me yesterday. There were about 25-30 horses and we mostly trotted but they also cantered. I wouldn't have had the confidence to just "go with it" if we hadn't cantered in the woods with you. THANK YOU!! There is no doubt in my mind that Milo will be able to fox hunt--I can't wait."

Shannon D.
Fairfax, VA


"I got my rescue horse Tornado in the fall of 2010 and although he was very kind and willing, I found myself constantly yelling at him and smacking him. We didn't know what to expect from each other and kept scaring ourselves. So I got in touch with Leslie, who had previously helped me teach one of my horses to trailer load, and she came out to help us.

In one hour, Leslie helped me and Tornado communicate calmly with each other. She gave me ground work exercises to do with him that I use currently (Spring of 2012) and that work like magic. She enabled me to put Tornado in a situation where he would succeed in doing what I asked and I could reward him. She showed me how willing he is to please and made it possible for me to feel confident in communicating with him.

I am very grateful for Leslie's help and would recommend her services to any horse lover! She will teach you how to have a positive experience and be in control when you work with your horse. Also her services are very affordable so it is easy to plan to have her out again to do even more interesting things with your horse and you!"

Kris D.
Leesburg, VA


"I have been so impressed with the change in Boogie after his month of training with you! I am convinced he is capable of anything now. And you are just as good as training the humans that come along with the horses! The one thing that stands out to me about you and your method is just how nonjudgmental you are when assessing the horse (and human) at the beginning and how that attitude is carried throughout the whole training process. It's something I mention to everyone when they ask me about my horse trainer. To me it makes a HUGE difference when you meet someone and instead of being pigeon holed into a "problem" you are met by a trainer that keeps an open mind and reserves her judgment until she has worked with the horse herself. I can't see you being daunted by anything. So many people told me that Boogie was dangerous, that I should sell him, that trying to have a relationship with my horse wasn't important. Each horse is an individual mind and you take the time to get to know that mind and tailor your training method to what will fit best with that particular horse. There is no 'one size fits all' training and that is what I love about you. Thanks so much for helping me understand my horse and putting such a strong foundation on him that has stuck with him no matter how much time goes in between riding sessions."

Leanne A.
Purcellville, VA


"You did an absolute amazing training job with Apollo. I have been riding for 30 years and am so impressed with your methods and results. Apollo unloaded himself from the trailer gently - then Sean hopped up on him and rode in a halter and lead rope. Thank you Leslie."

Beth M.
Centreville, VA


"Thank you again Leslie, the progress you have made is impressive. I feel like you did much more than develop a conditioned response horse.  You gave us a horse that is calm, cooperative and looking to make things easy for both me and herself."

Greg H.
Lovettsville, VA


"So, I went on a ride yesterday...all alone (it was lovely!), and out again this morning with a couple neighbors. He was perfect, and happy as a clam both times. Thank you, thank you! Riding is fun again :). Although, I'm still getting used to my barcalounger saddle...lol."

Adrienne G.
Purcellville, VA


"Another one of your students becomes a star this past weekend, it was Ribbon's first three day shoot. We got first place in a fun shoot friday night, second in the main match Saturday, and fourth on Sunday. She did an excellent job, stayed calm and put me in every position I needed to be in.Thanks again Leslie for being such a big part in starting my horses correctly."

Jimmy C..
Hickory, PA


"Just wanted to let you know that Piper has been perfect all week.  Yesterday I took her out with a friend to a trail system that is about 15 minutes from our house.  She loaded the first time, was absolutelly perfect on the trail and loaded perfectly on the way home.  No spooking, no bucking at the canter, no pulling, just perfect.  She has only been on these trails once before and had only been out with this particular horse once before and nothing seemed to bother her.  She was a little spun up at first and I did the calming excercises with her and she settled within a couple of minutes.  She was so soft and easy after that.  What a simple change that made a tremendous difference.  Thank You Thank You Thank you!"

Lisa B.
Fairfax Station, VA


"You Rock!!!! I had a wonderful time on Sunday. Thank you for your patience. You have a gift for teaching both the four legged and two legged creatures! Thanks for inspiring me to try..."

Whitney B .
Lovettsville, VA


"When I first got my 4 y.o. OTTB, he was well-mannered, quiet, docile, well-started, in need of some groceries and BIG at nearly 17.2H.  He’d only been off the track for four months and somewhere during the process of getting him fatter and getting to know him, he became a completely different horse.  He became cocky, rude, pushy, disrespectful and in some cases, dangerous. 

With 40 years of riding under my belt, I’m a good rider.  But for me, that also translates to my not wanting to deal with too many theatrics anymore.  I’m the first to say I’m too old for it.  Having met Leslie at a clinic years ago, she stayed in touch and I never forgot her.  She was the first person I thought of when I decided to send my horse away for some training.  She took my distress call, answered all of my questions and on very short notice, took my horse on just before I left for two weeks of overseas travel.

I got updates on my horse’s progress while I was away and I came to see his progress the day after I returned.  I was delighted to see what he’d learned.  Leslie rode my horse for me while I rode another so I could see how he and she would handle certain situations.  Leslie taught me some exercises to continue with him to keep him ‘tuned’.  On the last day, I rode him myself and was so thrilled to see how he processed certain obstacles and tasks.

Now that I have my horse home, he now has improved respect for me, he stays out of my space when asked, he seems much happier and more relaxed – as if he understands his role in life.  Not only did I get my old horse back, I got an even better one!"

J. D.
Chantilly, VA


"Our homebred thoroughbred Bu was a beautiful mover on the ground but he wouldn't let us train or mount him.  He was mostly just plain afraid.  Your patient whispers, gentle hand and kind discipline worked a miracle.  It was startling and wonderful, beautiful even, to watch you ride him at a canter up a muddy tree-lined hill in the forest."

John and Holly F.
Lovettsville, VA
Ithaca Manor


"We practiced loading, backing up...everything you showed us to do and Laura was just perfect, never put a foot wrong.  We closed the door in her face, walked her on and off, stopped, backed up, had her turn away, put her head down and she just never put a single foot in the wrong place.  We'll reinforce it but I think she's learned her lesson very well.  She didn't try to be a bully in the slightest.  Thank you for your help."

Suzanne Q.
Mount Airy, MD
Some Day Soon Farm


Roxane and Campbell sitting on Poncho and Rex.  Rollover to Miles of Smiles smiley."Leslie has no doubt saved my life, but more importantly, she has saved my dream.  I have wanted to ride since childlhood. I dreamt of being Calamity Jane  (Doris Day).  Well, I did turn out to be Calam --- I took lessons as a 55 year old chick and then bought a 10 year old TB gelding—oops. Of course the usual—I came off and broke some parts. While in recovery I found Leslie’s website and her story of a fall and recovery. She let me take lessons on the Great Greta.  My confidence got better again.  Then Leslie said –NO,NO to my TB, Sugar.  “You need a quiet, kind horse to ride”  said Leslie.  She called around and we found Poncho the comedy Appaloosa. Leslie has given Poncho and me a lot of good training.  We can trot and we can stop and we can start again.  Leslie found Poncho’s weak spots and  he's going to be a safe horse for Old Calamity Roxane, but mostly she has taught me to keep riding and work through my trouble.  Then I am safe.

 My husband began to take lessons with his wild wife and bought a 16+hand Paint/TB with a real desire to be in charge...great horse with a mind of his own. Campbell has proven to be a really good rider and has a real handle on the horse thing   His horse-Reckless Red aka Rex has needed some lessons in following directions.  Leslie has given Campbell the tools and Rex the training to be my leader trail horse. We now have a horse property in Idaho and will be taking the boys to their new home.  Leslie and her great attitude---You can do this, and I will never ask you to do something that you can not do—have made the adventure seem possible.  A real dream maker."

Roxane and Campbell G.
Mackay, ID


"Thanks again for coming out yesterday, I greatly appreciate your willingness to help us out.  Agatha loaded right on the trailer in the afternoon to go home- no questions or tantrums, hooray :-)  We ended up champion in both of our 3' divisions- good thing we made it there!

I can't thank you enough for your help!  I'll keep you posted on our show and trailer progress!  I'm so excited to be able to show now!"

Nicole W.
Gaithersburg, MD


"Nic is doing wonderfully, and we are very pleased with him.  This was a horse we never dreamed would do some of the things that he is doing.  We have built a trust that would not have been possible without you.  When I went out of town for a few days and came back, I yelled over the fence for him, and sure enough the sound of thundering hooves came over the ridge, and he was there, whinnying and prancing.  We are best friends, inseparable, and my family is amazed that this dumpy pony I bought for 500 dollars as a rescue has turned out to be a sleek, muscled horse, who enjoys life.  He is so happy. Thank you again."

Nicki U.
Purcellville, VA


I had not ridden my young Morgan horse, Teddy, for more than 18 months because he was bucking. I was seriously considering selling him. During his one month of training with Leslie, she addressed all of his behavior issues, and gave me some very useful instruction and safety tools to use when I sense an impending problem. Leslie not only got my horse back on track, her guidance also allowed me to regain my self-confidence. The week following his time with Leslie, Teddy and I went on a 4-hour trail ride--which included several water crossings and all kinds of terrain--and he was nearly perfect the entire time. It was the best ride I have ever had--on any horse, anywhere.

Leslie is very quietly effective, in control without being abusive or heavy-handed. She didn't "change" my horse, but her instruction has allowed me to appreciate all of his good qualities and deal with his "issues." I am using Leslie's advice in my efforts to gain his respect and achieve for both of us a quality riding experience.

Last week we took 2nd place in a local competition. I thank Leslie for giving my horse back."

Nancy B.
Purcellville, VA


"Most people do not realize the importance of proper ground work with a horse prior to riding. This point became especially clear to me when Wally and I were faced with crossing multiple creeks on a local trail ride recently. Prior to this trail ride, the largest body of water we had crossed was six inches wide and he stepped over it. You can see from the photo that the water was both wide and deep and had the potential of being a very frightening experience. However, after training at Miles of Smiles with you, Wally and I approached the water with more confidence and knowledge of how to safely manage this potentially fearful situation. Thank you for helping us overcome our fears of water and making our rides safer and therefore more fun. You're the best!"

Janet G.
Bristow, VA


"I just wanted to thank you for the clinic, it was so inspirational.  I had a wonderful time with Red and we really enjoyed meeting all of your other clients.  You gave us a really wonderful, new incentive, I've been doing trails with USTR and have been out and about ever since.  Red is so brave and so bold and so competitive that we are having a riot!   Red and I are on a whole new level, I now have the pony of every girls dream. I just wanted to let you know that I really appreciated it, thank you so much."

Cherie A.
Hamilton, VA


"The clinic provided a lot of insight for me personally.  It is a much different thing to just watch you work with the horse as opposed to teaching us how to work with our horses.  Your instructions and descriptions in the teaching process of these exercises was just superb!  Even though my dyslexia with right and left can sometimes get into the way of my comprehending I found your instructions to be totally clear and very well explained.  I can finally say that I believe I understand the concepts and procedures of how to use the groundwork exercises fully now.  It is amazing to me how much these groundwork exercises work hand in hand with the regular dressage lesson instruction that I have been getting.  The softening from the ground has made me see now that all I have to do is ask for the softening while mounted and I am getting it!!  In fact, on our trail ride after the clinic, I was testing to see if I could get some softening and sure enough I would ask with either rein and he would come down and soften right into the bit."

Rhonda B.
Charles Town, WV


"Thanks for a GREAT day yesterday!  I really, really enjoyed the entire clinic, even "choking" just trotting over the cavalettis.   DJ is so much fun to ride and she's getting much softer and responsive.  I'm getting better too even though it's still a struggle mentally but I can see where I'm making progress.  I just need to make myself get out and ride.  The ribbons were a nice touch - mine is in the office where I can see it all the time!"

Harriet W.
Lovettsville, VA


"I just wanted to thank you for the wonderful clinic and the babysitting on the trail.  It was very insightful for me to be riding along, scared out of my mind, while you lectured me about "mind set" - that was good for me, not too much at all and very poignant in the moment!  It's good to hear that Jolie passes the test as well, it gives me confidence in her.  I enjoyed the girls and learned a lot."

Carla O.
Round Hill, VA


"Fortunately for me you started Chester so well he is doing fantastic! He is trail riding regularly and has started jumping very small obstacles. We even trail rode for 5 hours in the halter after my bridle broke on the second day of an overnight camp trip. Thanks again for doing a wonderful job with Chester!!"

Sherry B.
Hillsboro, VA


"My son and I volunteer at Days End Farm Horse Rescue in Lisbon, MD, and he fell in love with a mare named Caramel Sunday when she came in as a starvation case with 6 other horses.  They had not known what type, if any, training she may have had previously.  So Lynell was wonderful enough to pay for a month of training with Leslie for Caramel (as my son and I call her).  Leslie was wonderful.  She was persistent, yet kind to Caramel and she has a soft hand and you can tell that she loves what she does.  She was brave enough to get on her not knowing her history, whether she was physically abused or what.  We could visit Caramel whenever we wanted and got to watch her work with Caramel on several occasions.  It was a very educational experience.  She taught me and my son Jimmy, who is 12, several training techniques that we could use when we brought Caramel home.  She was gracious enough to let me and Jimmy, try first hand so we could find any issues we may have with her and learn how to correct them.  He also got to ride Caramel on a trailride so she could watch them together for their first ride.  I would recommend Leslie to anyone I knew that had any type of training issues with a horse.  And I'm sure Days End would not hesitate to send another one of their horses to her.  If you have the privilege to have your horse trained by Leslie, you will be truly blessed!  Thank you, so much, Leslie for everything you have done to make our life with Caramel Sunday that much more wonderful!"

Laurie and Jimmy W.
Taneytown, MD


"Mariah enjoyed her ride today.  She had Kodi trot 5 laps and then practiced on the chubby X jump, zig zags and walk...she will not canter without you there. THANK YOU for giving her the confidence in you to do this when you are there, and the confidence in her and Kodi to ride when you are not :) She was proud of Kodi for being good without you there :)

So for so many things, for all that you have done...but most of all for all the SMILES you have brought ...THANK YOU!!!!  Truly you live up to your business name MILES OF SMILES TRAINING."

Lori and Mariah B.
Leesburg, VA


Cory sitting on Guinness.  Rollover to Miles of Smiles smiley."From the bottom of my heart I cannot tell you how much you've changed things for the better for me and my riding future.  Went out tonight for a ride - Guinness was perfect - only a little "eyeballing" when we went down the hill - there are cows on one side and a donkey, sheep and some geese on the other - but when we came back up, he wanted to hang out with them.  I can't tell you how much it means to be able to ride by myself again - I used to ride all the time by myself when I had my Arab - and I only dreamed of the day I would be able to do that again! I can't thank you enough for what you've done for me!"


Cory I.
Harwinton, CT


"Four years ago, we bought a 4 month old full Clydesdale named Ramblin’ Man. Our intention was to ride him and not drive. We loved seeing him grow up to become one of the gentle giants of his breed. When he turned 3 ½, he started to realize how big he was and if he did not want to do something, he did not do it. If he wanted to go somewhere, he went, even if a person was in the way. We had been contemplating when and where to send “Rammy” for training for manners and to be “broken” to ride. Our veterinarian recommended Leslie and after talking on the phone a number of times and reading over the information she sent, we made our decision to go for it.

We were tremendously impressed with the progress Leslie made in just one week with Rammy’s ground manners. Her unending patience and gentle but firm manner with our big horse was something to behold. We were welcome to come visit him anytime and we did see him about three times a week. We also were encouraged to come to his workouts to learn what she was doing and to practice it ourselves under her direction. This also included both of us getting on Rammy during his training.

The most fun and a memory we will always treasure was our trail ride through the beautiful woods near Lovettsville. Courtney rode Ram, I rode Greta, and Leslie led on Curly. We rode up and down hills, crossed streams and saw some breath-taking views.

Leslie not only helped us with training our horse but she is a great wealth of knowledge about tack, farriers, and anything to do with horses. We highly recommend Leslie. She is a wonderful trainer, her facility is very impressive, and she and her husband Dave are very kind and helpful people."

Shannon and Courtney A.
Purcellville, VA


"I just wanted to say thank you for a great ride today!! I loved every minute of it. I am crazy about Harvey and thrilled with how much you taught him. We are going to have a wonderful life together. Every time I ride a horse I think of my dad and the gift he gave me by encouraging my love of horses. And now every time I ride Harvey I will think of you and the gift you gave me with your thoughtful training of Harvest Moon. You are so talented Leslie, and I am thrilled that you have shared your talents and patience and joy with me and "Hoover". And I'd also like to thank Dave for all that he does in the background - the unsung hero - because without him Huckleberry Farm and Miles of Smiles Training would not be complete."

Linda G.
Lovettsville, VA


Kristin sitting on Grant.  Rollover to Miles of Smiles smiley."I think of you often and have been meaning to email and fill you in on Grant. He is absolutely fabulous. I have perma grin every time I ride. He is so fun, so willing, so smart and so awesome to sit on. When he gets those hind legs under and pushing, its like floating over the clouds. I have you to thank for teaching him all of the right basics. In fact, last week I was riding him around the property with another horse when the other horse brushed against a palm frond, scared himself and Grant and they both took off. Grant pulled up, took a deep breath and turned around to go check out what happened. I know I have you to thank for taking your time, earning his confidence and for teaching him the emergency brake! In a sticky situation, I know that I can always come back to the fundamentals you taught him."

Kristin S.
Malabar, FL
Straight Forward Dressage


"Leslie came highly recommended to me by others whose horses she has worked with, but she exceeded my expectations.  Sundance, my unbroken two-year- old Connemara/TB cross was a willful, spoiled, little brat who always wanted his own way and threw his considerable weight around to get it.  Leslie agreed to break him.  For 4 days she waged an uphill battle teaching this big colt manners, respect and bending in the round pen.  Of course, with patience and persistence, Leslie won him over.  In 8 days Leslie was riding him at the walk, trot and canter, on the trail, through water, trappy terrain, uphill and down.   In two weeks I got on him and did the same.  Sundance was as good as his golden palomino color.

Not only did Leslie train Sundance, she also trained me how to work with him.  Long ago I gave up riding my two year old babies.  Leslie made it possible for me to break this rule.  I continue to work with Sundance and am so pleased with his progress.  Leslie has become a trusted friend and advisor.  I took Sundance to a 3 day clinic and no one could believe this well behaved pony was just two.  I am so grateful for the solid foundation Leslie gave my horse.

I’ve had many trainers breaking many foals.  Leslie is simply the best."

Bettina G.
Leesburg, VA


"Now I ask you...what does it say when the Thoroughbred is  going along the trail with the two Paints and the Thoroughbred is calmer and has more manners?  It says his trainers - Leslie and Lynell - have not been wasting their time, that's what it says!

Thanks, Leslie.  Dover thanks you too!"

Lynell A .
Lovettsville, VA


"Leslie is great, she has done wonderful work with our young horses and has also started older ones under saddle.  I trust Leslie with all of my horses and all of my horses trust her.  She is the Miracle Worker!"

Liz H.
Lovettsville, VA
Silverwood Farm


"I wanted to write and thank you for all your help with Wellington.  I can’t begin to tell you how impressed I have been by your compassion, professionalism, and your interest in our problem.  From our first conversation, you were reassuring, and confident without seeming like a “know it all”.  You never lectured or tried to educate when I explained all the stupid things I had tried to do.  We sent you a horse that was very scared and refusing to load on the trailer and was terrified when being transported.  In less than 48 hours I arrived at your place to find a very different horse.  He was so much more confident and happy.  My mouth really hit the ground, however, when I saw him load and stand on the trailer.  I am not exaggerating when I tell you we spent almost three weeks trying to get the same results…only managing to scare him in the process.  With over 30 years of horse experience I felt I had seen it all.  I was also pleased by the time you spent working with me and showing me how to continue working with Wellington.  You were patient and generous with your time.

Your follow up was also great.  Calling me to let me know that Wellington arrived safely and was settling was reassuring.  In addition, I appreciated your call after we picked Wellington up to confirm that he arrived safely.  Communicating with you was easy and I was pleased at how available you were.

I would not hesitate to recommend you to anyone struggling with a difficult horse or one that needs to be backed.  As a matter of fact I have already given your number out to several of my friends.  Please also consider giving my name out as a reference if you wish.  Thank you again for believing in Wellington and being so positive and straightforward to work with.  We look forward to working with you in the future."

Karen F.
Berryville, VA


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