How to Choose the Right Footing for Your Riding Arena

Riding arenas have the potential to be a rider’s dream. And just like the horse’s training regimen, it all comes down to the foundation. There is some complex engineering involved in arena footing construction. If you are thinking of investing in building an arena, there are also some important factors to consider – factors that can influence either the advancement of your horse’s performance – or put him at risk for lameness or ligament/muscle injury. In addition, the degree to which you pay attention to dust control, especially in an indoor arena, will directly affect the quality of health of your horse, yourself, and others who also use the arena – not just riders and instructors, but onlookers, helpers, and others too. “Regardless of the intended arena use, horse health should be the primary concern,” said Dave Heaton with Conterra Industries in Strathmore, Alberta. “For North Americans not living in southern USA, we live in one of the harshest environments to maintain consistent footing, whether indoor or out. If someone intends to build an arena, it should be considered a 10 to 20 year investment.”