Selecting the best surface for your arena, lunge pen or gallop track is paramount for your horse’s safety, as well as maximising longevity of its use. Equus Design & Build work alongside some of the leading equestrian surface providers including Martin Collins and Softrack to ensure that you have the best riding arena surface options available to suit your requirements. There are many types of equestrian arena surface available including sand, rubber chippings and carpet fibre providing different types of arena footing.

Equus Design & Build can offer world leading OTTO Sport Ebb & Flow systems for indoor and outdoor equestrian arenas. The advantage of an Ebb & Flow system includes fully automatic irrigation and drainage, operating from below the arena surface. The system aims to recreate the Ebb & Flow of natural water, with the aim of releasing water into the surface before quickly draining it away again. This prevents the surface from becoming ‘deep’ or unrideable, providing an arena suitable for all-weather use.

The Ebb & Flow system is becoming an extremely popular solution for arena surfaces, particuarly in warm climates as well as competition arenas. The Equus team have installed Ebb & Flow system arenas in Europe, which are particularly popular in veterinary practices, and are pleased to be able to offer the same service to UK clients. Contact Equus Design & Build for further information.

Laying tarmac

EBB & Flow System For Arena Surfaces

The perfect solution for arenas which quickly become ‘deep’, dry or ‘tracky’. The ebb & flow system for arena surfaces ensures perfect going by constant monitoring of the arena surface for moisture content.

Essentially, an ebb & flow system waters the arena “from below” through the use of automatic sensors. It is suitable for both indoor and outdoor manèges, achieving the perfect arena surface for all equestrian disciplines.
The water level is measured constantly and regulated accordingly through a piping system in order for the footing to remain steadily moist. With an ebb & flow system, there is no need to water the riding arena manually, which can be troublesome and not cost effective long term.

stage 1 ebb & flow system

1. Creating the Substructure

An excavation of 40 cm is created. The subsoil needs to be stable and compact.

stage 2 ebb & flow system

2. Curb Stones

Curb stones are installed to fixate the PVC liner around the edges of the arena.

3. PVC Liner

An impermeable PVC liner is created to ensure that the desired amount of water stays in the arena and cannot drain into the subsoil.

4. Water Shaft

The water shaft maintains the desired water level. It is equipped with sensors as well as water inlet and outlet valves.

stage 6 ebb & flow system

5. Control Panel

The control panel shows the current water level and offers the user the ability to manually adjust it.

stage 7 ebb & flow system

6. Irrigation Pipes

The irrigation pipes are installed in order to transport water in and out of the arena.

7. Irrigation Sand Layer

This layer transports the water upwards from the irrigation pipes into the footing. This is possible by means of the capillary effect.

8. Perforated Mats

These are installed to increase security and performance, but also to separate the footing layer from the irrigation sand layer underneath.

stage 9 ebb & flow system

9. Surface

The surface is then applied above the perforated mats. The ebb & flow system works with a number of arena surface types.

stage 10 ebb & flow system

10. Watering From Below

The ebb & flow system is now ready to be used.