Horse cantering through muddy footing

The Dirt on Footing

It is being called the world’s most extensive equine surface study by its publisher, the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI.) Four years, eight horse disciplines, and multiple researchers studying the effects of arena surfaces on the health of horses’ joints.

The Equine Surfaces White Paper brings together the latest data and published scientific papers on arena and turf surfaces and key properties of footing. The optimal composition, construction, and arena maintenance are also reviewed for maximizing the performance of the horse while minimizing the injury risk, according to the FEI.

John McEwen, FEI 1st Vice President and Chair of the FEI Veterinary Committee said, “… we can fully understand how the right surfaces, with the necessary preparation and ongoing maintenance, can extend the working lives of sport horses and produce the best performances.”

The highlights of the paper will be presented on the first day of the FEI Sports Forum on April 28 at the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences.

“The Equine Surfaces White Paper is a living document, and we will continue to update it as we develop our knowledge on surfaces and their influence on horse performance and soundness with new scientific studies and surface data, which is absolutely key as horse sport continues to grow around the world,” McEwen added.

View The Equine Surfaces White Paper