Sand Types

Beta-Ride® Sand Types Guide

It is important to note that sand is not all the same, and the sand type that you use on your arena can have a big effect on the arena surface performance.

If we’re installing a new arena surface for you, we’ll choose the most appropriate sand for you, depending on your budget. Using Beta-Ride’s high quality fibre with the sand, means you can get sensibly priced, regional, sub–angular sand resulting in a well-performing arena surface not compromised by cost.

If you’re adding our carpet fibres to already existing sand, you can send us a small sample & we’ll check it for you. Our high performance fibres can benefit even some poorer sand types. The fibres create a root-like structure in between the sand grains, which can help the sand’s performance & increase longevity of the sand.

A Bit More About Types Of Sand

Sand grains vary in shape from angular to round.

Round Sand Grains graphic
Round Grains

Round grains can’t fit together tightly. Think of marbles! The more round the sand grain, the more it will move and give less traction, therefore riding too loose. This can cause strain injuries & sap energy from the horse.

Angular Sand Grains graphic
Angular Grains
Angular grains slot together too much over time & create a very compact, poorly draining surface, resulting in poor impact absorption & the potential for impact & stress injuries. Sections of angular sand often fracture, resulting in a dusty surface & degradation of the sand with poor performance.
Sub-Angular Sand Grains graphic
Sub-Angular Grains

Sub-Angular grains are what you’re after in an arena surface. They compact less than angular grains yet still allow good traction & impact absorption. They also benefit drainage.

Crushed quarry stone called fines or Duff should be avoided if at all possible. They usually range between angular to sub-angular in shape, with sizes 10 sieve to 50 sieve. The particles are sharp and will compact tightly. If used alone, being softer they break down into dust sooner.

Sand should be clean, however, some sands have a clay content. This type of sand can be an advantage in retaining moisture in areas where the natural properties of the soil are free-draining or sandy.

What If I Already Have Existing Sand That Isn’t Sub-Angular?

You can send us a small sample of your sand & we’ll check it for you. Our arena fibre will benefit most sand types, but if we think that it would be a waste of money, we’d tell you.

If you already have very round sand grains in your existing arena surface, our fibre sits in between the grains & the root-like structure prevents the round grains from moving around so much, therefore giving a much more stable, secure footing with more traction.

If you have very angular sand grains in your existing arena surface, our fibre sits in between the grains & prevents them from slotting together, therefore preventing the surface from becoming compacted & reducing fractures & dust. This also increases the longevity of the sand as it is not broken down as quickly.

The Finer Details

When we select natural sand for an arena, we request magnified pictures of the sand & select the most sub-angular available. Whilst fine Silica sand with particles ranging between 60 sieve & 200 sieve, (with about 7% below 200), are the most desirable, cost & supplier location often exclude this option. Using Beta-Ride’s high quality fibre with the sand, means you can get sensibly priced, regional, sub–angular sand resulting in a well-performing arena surface not compromised by cost.

✓   Working for a safer environment for horse & rider