Outdoor and indoor riding arenas come in many shapes and sizes. Typically, the smallest standard size is a 40m x 20m area, but over the years I have seen arenas of many different shapes and sizes.
Indoor riding schools can be built to fit an existing building (a barn, for example), and many equestrian menages are constructed in new purpose-built structures with viewing galleries, lighting etc. Outdoor riding arenas also come in a vast range of lengths and widths; some arenas are are fenced, some not.
The common thread with all arenas is that the surface is constructed of an imported material, usually sand-based, with an addition of a number of different products such as rubber crumb, fibre, wood pulp, textiles and polymers and similar. The addition of these materials helps to create a firm, but cushioned, riding surface that suits most disciplines.
A big problem however, with indoor AND outdoor surfaces, is the presence of dust; especially throughout the summer months. A dusty riding arena is unpleasant for the rider, the horse…and any one else in the building (if inside). Outside arenas are prone to having their surfaces blown away.
Enter Buy irrigation’s ProRide arena watering system, giving automatic, precise irrigation for indoor and outdoor horse riding surfaces, regardless of their size. The ProRide is designed for DIY. A self-install kit, the automatic watering system is tailored to suit equestrian arena surfaces and can water up to a 30m wide surface from the perimeter. (In fact, we can go wider than this, but the wider the arena, the more expensive the kit to cover from the outside.) For wider surfaces, it is sometimes more cost-effective to cover the majority of the surface from the perimeter and simply place a one or two central sprinklers along the centre line of the surface, for 10 minutes or so, to cover the middle of the riding arean surface.
The ProRide system is driven by a small water tank and pressure pump, which is usually located near the building, or close by the arena. This provides more than sufficient flow and pressure to operate the water sprinklers (town water mains rarely provide adequate water pressure). From the pump and water tank, sprinklers are installed (usually on the top of the kick boards in an indoor set up or clipped to a fence on an outdoor layout), spaced down each side of the surface. The size of the surface will determine the quantity and type of irrigation sprinklers we supply you. The water sprinklers are then connected to a set of solenoid valves (electric taps) that are open and closed via a small electronic control box. When the valves are opened, the pump automatically starts delivering water to the riding arena surface.
The irrigation controller allows the user to program one or a number of automatic starts throughout the day, so the watering system can operate fully automatically or manually (by simply pressing a button). Either way, the system will stop when watering is complete, so once started you can walk away – knowing the surface has the required amount of water applied.
With the ProRide system, a couple of manual drain points are included, to empty the water from the pipes as protection against the frosty weather (because you won’t need the system during this time).
The ProRide kit is supplied with everything needed to complete the riding arena watering system installation. You will need to connect your water supply to the ball float valve provided for the water tank, and provide 2 x 13 amp plug sockets for the controller and pump. That’s it!
We will deliver the ProRide system to your riding arena after receipt of your deposit (usually 40% of the order value). When we deliver, we’ll spend some time taking the installer through the correct installation method, and explain clearly how the irrigation equipment goes together. This usually just takes a couple of hours. Then we’ll collect the final payment for the system, and leave it with you. In the unlikely event of any problems, questions can be dealt with speedily, by phone or email.
There are many examples of the Buy Irrigation ProRide system around the UK – indoor and outdoor installations. Please contact me if you’d like further information, or if you have any specific questions.