Building a riding arena

Discussion in 'Horse Chat' started by CarlisleChipper, Aug 31, 2018.

  1. CarlisleChipper

    CarlisleChipper Senior Member+

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    GONE ROPING and Alsosusieq2 like this.
  2. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

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    I’d steal 10’ from somewhere. If you ever plan on showing you’ll feel much much better having a regulation ring than the little one.
     
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  3. CarlisleChipper

    CarlisleChipper Senior Member+

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    I wish I could steal but even if I were to push back the fencing near my house I am stopped by a line of oak trees. I don't think I've provided a photo from that angle that shows the trees. BUT... what I can do is measure the bottom of the arena length wise to see if there is an uneveness that provides the 10 extra feet. And if it's only 5 feet or so perhaps I can get away with a big dressage arena that is short by 5 feet. I've never had the luxury of a large dressage arena. Even at the barn I ride it. So. I will remeasure it and get back to let y'all know!
     
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  4. slc

    slc Senior Member

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    Excellent on the sales techniques!

     
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  5. CarlisleChipper

    CarlisleChipper Senior Member+

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    20181123_161511.jpg

    So that's my house. And those are the trees preventing me from extending the arena by 10 more feet. It's still 186ft right at about 57 meters. How frowned upon would it be to have a 20x57 dressage arena?
     
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  6. Rhythm 'n Blues

    Rhythm 'n Blues Senior Member

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    ^ while it isn’t regulation size, I would do it over any other size for sure! You’ll have to set your corner letters at the proper distance from the corners/short sides, and then figure out what is left and divide up that 3m between them. Doing that you won’t *really* notice it, but it will mean you’re riding ovals ever so slightly if you’re using all your markers correctly (which you should for when you go to show).
     
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  7. mooselady

    mooselady Senior Member

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    I didn’t even realize that our indoor arena is short....until this summer when I was struggling with the three loop canter serpentine, with no change of lead, then I needed the space!

    Once it was pointed out it was obvious, but i’ve Been happily schooling in it for years without noticing.
     
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  8. sherian

    sherian Senior Member

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    switch to eventing - the lower levels are 20 x 40 ring
     
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  9. CarlisleChipper

    CarlisleChipper Senior Member+

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    That's what I already plan to do. I've been doing dressage and jumpers all my life just need the XC part.
     
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  10. slc

    slc Senior Member

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    I can't agree with R&B on this one. The idea that having a 186 foot long and not having a 196 foot long (60 m long) arena is somehow a problem for dressage is silly, especially for riding intro level to 2nd level. At advanced level 3 day eventing, the dressage test is about equivalent to third level, I don't even think it would make a difference at 3rd level. Maybe at Intermediare II or Grand Prix when you're trying to squeeze in that zig zag on the centerline, LOL, and you're praying for 10 more feet, THEN maybe.

    The problem is not the arena being 10 feet short. That is slightly less than 5% of the regulation length for heaven sake. You can even position your letters so there is very little difference in the length of the diagonal(the end letters in a standard arena are 6 meters from the physical corner of the arena, you would adjust the difference between all your letters on the longside instead of chopping a lot off that 6 meter distance). And besides, most people don't lengthen the full diagonal anyway.

    The problem is the person developing the feel and the eye for the figures and for making the figures accurately. The problem is people riding a 15 meter circle when a 10 meter one is called for, and doing it at somewhere between B and the corner, not at B. The problem is egg-shaped circles instead of round ones. An arena 10 feet short is not going to interfere with practicing riding accurate figures.

    Most dressage people don't have a full length arena at home or even where they board, if they board their horse. The width of the arena is actually more of an issue. Practicing a lot in a very narrow arena can aggravate some soundness issues and it does actually change the size of your circles too much, and if the arena long side is extremely short, like 20 meters yes, definitely, you can feel the horse running out of gas on a diagonal or a long side.

    And in fact, when you go to a show, so many things are different, there are distractions, your horse may be stronger in the bridle or more excited or alert, the footing may be different, so you are always watching for your letters, adjusting and riding a little bit differently anyway. Really, a lot of it is about going to shows often enough that you get to practice showing, anyway.

    Another comment, you might not want to put your arena too close to those trees in order to get a longer arena, I don't know if your measurement is really close up to the trees or not. Depending on the type of tree, they may have surface foots that would extend into your arena over time. You can certainly tear up your arena and chop surface roots out once in a while(bleah!), but the better solution would be to cut the trees down and pull out any surface roots before you build your arena, and plant something that has roots that don't run across the surface. It being Texas I am not sure which trees wouldn't extend surface roots in that environment. Asking a local tree guy would help.


     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018

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