Sweet Meadow Stable

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Sweet Meadow Stable is a full service "natural" equine facility established in 1996. The stable was the first of it's kind in the beach area to offer natural equine based programs for adults and children.

Sixteen years later and thousands of students later, Sweet Meadow Stable is the area's only facility offering complete equine programs that teach everything there is to know about horses in a complete and natural way.

The stable boasts a huge menu of horse related, year-round activities that any horse lover can enjoy.  Sweet Meadow is the only stable infusing natural horsemanship (horse whispering) into all aspects of programs offered. A student may choose from many different equine paths, combine disciplines and learn about horses in their entirety, not just learning how to ride but how to care for and truly understand horses.

Weather your a serious show rider, riding for pleasure, first time beginner or if you have been riding for years, Sweet Meadow is sure to have a program to suit you.

Ava & Sec A pony "Cedarcrest Forget Me Knot" 

Our stable is different

Sweet Meadow Stable is the beach area's only natural lesson stable. Natural meaning the way in which we interact and think about horses. A way which is molded after horses living in the wild. This way of thinking is called Natural Horsemanship or more familiar "Horse Whispering."

Sweet Meadow also believes in Natural Horsekeeping. This is where horses are not confined in stalls, do not use blankets and do not nail on horseshoes. 

Another fact about the stable is Shelley encourages positive thinking and speaking in her barn when it comes to horses and horse experiences. Sweet Meadow encourages students and their parents to let go of negative phrases and use only positive ones to describe a horse or an experience. Only then can true "natural" principles behind Natural Horsemanship set in.

Sweet Meadow Stable's unique way of thinking, teaches all students how to listen and communicate softly, but effectively with all horses they encounter. Most importantly, understand a horse's point of view and how they feel and learn.

This simple fact has been key to running the most successful and largest lesson stable in the beach area since 1996.

Fact: Sweet Meadow Stable has an excellent safety record. It is the stable's dedication to certain safety practices and Shelley's nineteen years of being an instructor, that keeps the record going strong. Being around horses has enough risks, so having a person who truly understands horses and teaching is paramount.


Most Recent Letter's:

I have a little piece of "Heaven On Earth" with Shelly at Sweet Meadow Stable. I have been riding off and on since I was a kid. Since I am 53 years old, that is a long time. I do not claim to be anything, but a horse lover and a novice at best. I have always ridden western, just recently I decided to follow my heart and a life long passion and to start riding English. I use the word passion, because every Tuesday & Thursday I fall a little bit more in love with all things Sweet Meadow & Shelly. I encourage anyone who loves horses and has a passion to ride,but might be a little scared, because of 1 reason or another to put your apprehensions behind you. Shelly is incredible and she will make you feel that way too. I quit looking, because I have found my horse home. Thank you Shelly! I am over the top.

Awesome place to ride at the beach! My daughter loves horses, and she has ridden at several different stables. She fell in love with the natural horsemanship you teach at Sweet Meadow. I am sure we will be back next time we are in Bethany Beach. Thanks so much Shelley! 

"I will never forget the six months of training I had from you. I was 13 and by the first month I was getting to experience being in competitions. It did wonders for my self-esteem and I loved riding with Legend. I'm now 23, and I would love to get back on the saddle one day. Thank you so much. Karen

Thank you so much for your dedication and compassion. Your are truly an amazing teacher and person!"  Mary

"I just wanted to let you know that the highlight of Katie's summer was the week she spent at your summer camp. You have a real gift for teaching and I appreciate all you did for Katie. I especially appreciate how well you took care of her diabetes – thank you. It is a real tribute to you – I don't know how you made it so much fun in the hot August sun. But, you did it!  
We will be at the beach the first two weeks of August 2013 and when I told Katie we were going to the beach the first thing she said was "will you sign me up for Sweet Meadow Camp again?" Please let me know when you set up your schedule for 2013 (my fingers are crossed that you will do a beginner camp while we are there). We want to be sure to sign up right away. Thanks again. She talks about you and Jordan and her summer camp experience all the time. It is so cute! Stay warm this winter."  

"Since my daughter has been coming to your stables over the past two years, we have seen a tremendous improvement in her overall happiness. Before she was into horses, we tried everything and she never took an interest into any activity. Now that she has found Sweet Meadow, she feels so at home there and now the problem is getting her to come home!"  Thanks Again, Bill

 Julia is looking forward to trying out new barns and we will look carefully. It’s was night and day how different her riding experience was compared to her wonderful summer riding with you and the girls at SMS. Best Regards, Tricia

"Thought you might want to hear this: apparently Vanderbilt specifically told my college counselor that the horse rescue/camp counselor/director stuff made me stand out from the rest of the applicants :) Thank you so much for giving me all of those opportunities and basically being an amazing instructor and person! I have loved every one of my 11(?!!) years at SMS and can't wait for many more!" 
♥ Taylor

"Riley was talking about you the other day, saying that you were the best teacher she has. She desperately wants to go to the beach to ride but not sure when we will be up again."  
Best, Maureen

"You are an amazing instructor, you don't just teach horseback riding lessons, you also teach horse understanding lessons! Thank you!"

The stable is located 12 minutes from 
the North Ocean City, Maryland/ Fenwick 
Island area's and eight minutes from Bethany Beach off Rt. 54/ Lighthouse Rd.

Julia & Sec B pony "Brookeside Pocketwatch"

A little education goes a long way

Most stables offer traditional horseback riding techniques, techniques that have been around for hundreds of years with little change. Some examples are the use whips, crops, spurs in addition to a dominating position with horses. This type of relationship can end up with injuries to the horse, rider or both.

A high occurrence of physical injuries are not the only negative outcome of many traditional riding philosophies, but many riders end up with serious fears, bad memories and a blame to the horse when things did not go the riders way.

Shelley explains, "Many times, traditional thinking uses negative terms to describe a poor experience thus placing blame on the horse. I believe phrases such as, that horse threw me and calling any horse bad is all traditional thinking. Just like life, we need to look at ourselves first and what we do directly or indirectly with horses before we judge the outcome."

Shelley goes on to say, "Make no mistake, there are no bad horses. Horses are only as good as their rider. What there is though, is a huge lack of knowledge in a better way to understand and handle horses. Stables who use whips, spurs, martingales, tie-downs, harsh bits in a daily program are traditional type facilities. When searching for a facility to ride at, it's good to know the difference and that you now have options for a more gentle way to learn."


Ava & Sec B pony "Brookeside Pocketwatch"

Shelley follows these two styles of 
Natural Horsemanship practices

Whether you are a local here or down for the 
summer, Sweet Meadow has something for
everyone, all ages and all levels. As you can see, 
this place is not your typical horse stable. 

Check out our site more and 
see why we are different, meanwhile 
enjoy your visit!