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Ideal Lighting in Horse Exercise Arena

You can’t just stick random old bulbs in your horse exercise arena and expect it to do the job. Horses are unlike any other animals — capable of performing to a high level in competitive and sporting activities. Their training can range from early mornings to late evenings, so riding arenas need to feature suitable lighting and be well illuminated.

An incorrect lighting system in your horse exercise arena can result in something too dim or too bright, putting horses and riders in danger with shadows and flickers. That’s not to mention replacing poor lighting repeatedly which can waste thousands of dollars. Here’s what you need to know about ideal lighting for your indoor arena.

Indoor Arena Considerations

The indoor area is more enclosed, so there’s no natural light source. You need a form of lighting to illuminate the space. There are various indoor horse arena lighting options available, such as:

  • Fluorescent high bay lights
  • Pulse start metal halide lighting
  • LED lighting

After choosing the lighting type, the next thing to consider for your horse exercise arena lighting is the colour temperature. It needs to be around 4100 to 5500 kelvin as this temperature is closer to sunlight and provides high contrast, brightening the riding area to its full potential. Also, make sure the lights are flicker-free to avoid discomfort or irritation to humans or horses.

To reduce any problems with the lighting, such as flickering, installing LED lighting in your indoor arena is one way to improve the experience and maintain safety. When choosing your lighting, also think about:

  • The horses: Where are the horses spending the majority of their time? Pick safe lighting so they don’t injure themselves on shards of glass if they’re to rear up and shatter the bulbs. Look for shatterproof lens covers or durable materials to minimise this risk.
  • The height: The type of lighting, materials and location aren’t the only things to focus on. Consider the height, too, as the added heat can be uncomfortable when they’re too close to the horses.
  • Colour rendering: Focus on colour rendering so you can always see the natural colour of the horses. You can spot health concerns while it also reduces and safety concerns for the riders and horses.
  • Lighting design analysis: Not every lighting solution works across every arena. Requirements always differ, so search for experts who can ensure you’ll get the right lighting installed. For example, they’d tell you about the minimum footcandles you need, what brightness you need, arrangements and more. The end result? Cost-saving and sufficient light.
  • Lux: The lux requirement can vary depending on what the indoor arena is being used for. For instance, if you’re using it for training, 250 lux will do the job as the horse and rider can see with no issues.

In the past, traditional lighting did the trick. But now, LED lights are proving to be the popular option — here’s why.

Why Choose LED Lighting?


LED lighting is bright enough to illuminate the entire indoor arena, ensuring everyone is safe. It’s also safe for horses as it doesn’t cause any discomfort, keeping the horses happy.

Revenue Stream

If riders can’t ride for long enough due to poor lighting, LED lights in the indoor riding area can increase the time on horses. In the long term, it can increase revenue.

Cost and Energy Saving

It’s no secret LED lighting is energy efficient. They consume less energy, use less power, yet still provide bright light. The added benefit is it’ll decrease your electricity costs and is a more affordable horse exercise arena lighting option. As there’s no warmup time, it’ll never waste energy as they can turn on and off instantly.

No Glares or Flickering

LED lights don’t result in glares, so there’s no discomfort for the animals. No flickering is a crucial feature, too, as it can cause discomfort to the horses, riders and ruin the spectator experience.

Low Maintenance and Cost

Over time, LED lighting is the cheaper option. LED horse arena lighting can save around 75% energy consumption which leads to a kinder energy bill. Plus, they’re long-lasting, so you don’t need to shell out the dollars for regular maintenance.

To keep your horses safe and healthy, your horse exercise arena will benefit from LED lighting.