A Quick Guide to Riding Arena Sizes and Design

A horseback rider races around an arena.

Designing buildings and structures is never easy. There are several factors you need to consider when creating different structures. If you are an owner of a horse or horses and wish to join competitions, you may be considering having your own space where you can take better care of your horse/s and maintain them. All animal owners only want what’s best for the animal. Whether they are a pet or a companion, we do our best to give these furry figures the best treatment. 

Say you finally decided to build a riding arena for your equestrian business or personal use. Do you know precisely what your arena should look like or how big it should be? This article will discuss your riding arena size and design to ensure that you are getting your money’s worth and not wasting time building something you cannot use.

What Are Riding Arenas?

People often refer to a riding arena as a school or ménage. These riding arenas are vital for horse owners, especially if you are running an equestrian business. These temporary homes for your horses offer a more private and manageable environment as you can enjoy all the space without having to worry about distractions and running into strangers or external objects. 

The amount of privacy you get from riding in an arena is perfect for practicing for competitions. You do not have to worry about the setting changes as it is not accessible to the most public. With that, what should a riding arena look like, and how big does it have to be?

Riding Arena Size

What is an ideal size for a riding arena? The most common ground sizes of riding arenas are usually around 20 x 40 or 20 x 60 meters. 20-meter arenas can sometimes seem a bit too narrow for some people, especially for jumps. A 20 x 40-meter arena is the smallest size you could go for in building a ménage. 

Arenas should have enough room and a clear span structure, so poles or posts within the facility are not ideal. Regarding the height from floor to ceiling, you must have at least 16 to 20 feet between to make sure that your horse can execute jumping routines comfortably. Any height above 20 feet is for commercial and more professional arenas. A riding arena’s doors should also be tall and wide enough for a horse with a rider to enter safely. Experts usually recommend a height of around 13 to 15 feet. 

Regarding how large your floor plan should be, you can go as large as you prefer as long as it meets the minimum size requirement. There is no exact limit to how large and spacious an arena should be. As long as it is within your budget and is designed feasibly, it will do. Speaking of design, let us now discuss what the design of a riding arena should be. 

Riding Arena Design

  • Safety

Like most common facilities and structures, designing a riding arena has many factors you need to consider. The most important factor is safety. In building an arena, you have to make sure that the design is sturdy and can withstand the toughest of weather. You have to ensure that the design is done professionally to ensure that it aligns with what the law states to be safe and secure. 

Remember, safety always comes before aesthetics. Do not settle for cheap and flimsy material that can quickly wear down after a while. Riding arenas are a commitment meaning they will be around for a long time. While it is good to have a budget limit and set specific extents to how much you should cost, you should never have to sacrifice the horses’ well-being and yourself just because you wanted to settle for what is more affordable. A large but poorly constructed arena is no better than a small arena that is safe to be in. 

  • Equipment

Something you will need for your riding arena is the equipment. You cannot simply put a roof and walls around a large stretch of land and call it a riding arena. Schools have a lot of equipment that you can use to do practices and rides more fun. Besides, having the proper gear while practicing your run can help prepare you better for your next competition or show. This equipment includes a judge’s box, stack poles, blocks & wings, etc. 

And of course, you will need an area in the arena where you can store all the extra equipment and objects. To ensure that your equipment is not just lying around and cluttered in one place, you can have a small storage space or room within the arena where all the stuff is gathered for easy safekeeping. 

A large pack of beautiful horses.

  • Surface

Again, as mentioned earlier, you cannot just build a wall and a roof around a large chunk of land and call it an arena. Horses’ feet have a different shape than us, meaning they walk better on other grounds as well. To ensure that you have a training ground similar to where horse racing takes place, you can have a professional check the area where you will be building the arena to see whether the surface needs improvements. Having a good surface requires correct drainage & membranes, removal of tree stumps, choosing the suitable base, etc. 

  • Lighting Options

One of the good things about riding arenas is that you can use them outside of daylight hours. If you ever decide to take a ride early in the morning before the sun rises, you can do so in an arena, provided that the lighting system is adequate. Make sure you select a lighting system that is not too bright to cause your eyes to strain and not too dim that you almost cannot see anything. 

Bad lighting can be dangerous, especially when you are riding. Remember to take advantage of natural light with skylights and windows to ensure you are not spending too much on unnecessary electricity. 

Riding arenas are not just walls, ample land, and good gear. Designing an arena can get complicated as you will have to get permission for most of the things you will be adding to your design. Lights, surface grounds, and size are just the tip of the iceberg. 

There are numerous things you have to consider besides riding arena size and design. Ensure that you know the legal aspects of building a riding arena and have a professional look at your plan before paying lots of money on it. Be smart and see what you have to do to make your expenses, effort, and time worth it. 

Have A Horse In Coconut Creek?

Millpond Stables in Coconut Creek is your number one choice when it comes to horse care. Our horse boarding services are top notch, our all wood stables are maintained by expert staff. Take horse back riding lessons with seasoned professionals and ride your horse on scenic trails near our stables. Get engaged in the community with local horse shows and gatherings. Are your kids interested in horses? We offer an annual summer camp designed to teach kids how to ride and care for horses. Contact us today to sign up.

Krizzia Reyes is an author for Millpond Stables.

About The Author

As a writer at many renowned websites Krizzia Reyes has covered a wide range of topics in many industries. It has been her passion to only deliver the truth and nothing but the truth.