Which is the best horse fencing for a round yard?
As a horse owner, one of the essential components of your property is a round yard. This is where your horse will be trained and begin its learning journey.
If you’re building a round yard, it’s essential to choose the right type of horse fencing to ensure the safety and well-being of both the horses and their handlers. A wrong decision can ruin your training efforts, and the horse’s health and might even put the safety of you or your trainer at risk. Not to mention the additional cost and the stress that entails.
When it comes to selecting the best horse fencing for a round yard, post and rail fencing is the most popular choice. But the question is which one is right for you, your animals and your property? What are the factors to consider when choosing horse fencing for your round yard?
At Stock & Noble, we provide the finest and safest fencing solutions to our high-end customers across Australia and New Zealand. While Premium Steel Post and Rail and Horserail are some of our best-performing products, and the bias is obvious. However, our goal through this blog is not to sell our products but to give you fact-based information and help you create a safe and beautiful equine property.
In this article, you will learn what is a round yard and the critical factors to be considered while choosing a horse fence for your round yard. Finally based on these factors you will be able to easily and successfully evaluate different post and rail fencing options and choose the one that fits your needs and vision.
What is a round yard on a horse property?
A round yard is a circular enclosure that can be used for a variety of activities, including lunging, groundwork, and liberty training. They are also useful for acclimating horses to new surroundings and riders, as well as providing a space for horses and riders to work together safely.
It’s typically between 12 and 18 metres in diameter, and sometimes smaller round yards are better depending on the primary use.
The circular shape of the round yard provides a controlled environment for horses to move in circles, which can be helpful for training and developing their balance, coordination, and obedience. It is a must-have working tool for horse training and management and an integral part of an efficient horse property.
What are the critical factors to consider for choosing the right horse fencing for your round yard?
Factor#1: Primary use of a round yard
Firstly, it’s important to determine the primary use of your round yard. Will it be for breaking in horses, exercising, or training? The size, construction and horse fencing of your round yard will depend on this. A larger round yard with a combination of flexible rail and steel or timber fencing is recommended for training horses, while a smaller one with timber post and rail fencing is suitable for breaking in horses.
Factor#2: Strength of the horse fence
As the sphere design of a round yard exerts a lot of pressure on it, the horse fencing needs to be strong and well-constructed. The bottom half of the fence needs to be solid to keep the soil, sand or any other base material inside the round yard. It will also help avoid horse’s feet getting entangled in the fence.
Factor#3: Height of the horse fence
The height of the horse fencing used on a round yard should be 1.8 to 2 meters, with the first meter being solid with a rubber or solid rail. This height is essential to keep the horses inside, ensuring they cannot jump over the fence during training or exercise.
Factor# 4: Length of the post
For a round yard, because the recommended height of the fence is comparatively higher, the post needs to go deeper into the ground to give integrity to the fence. Thus, the length of the post should be at least 3 metres.
Factor#4: Safety of the horse fence
Safety is a crucial factor when selecting the best horse fencing for your round yard. Horses are powerful animals and can easily break through or jump over inadequate fencing, putting themselves and others at risk.
Choose a fence that is strong enough to withstand the weight and impact of horses without breaking or splintering. To prevent accidents and protect the rider the posts should be installed at a slight angle, and the top rail should be flexible.
Factor#5: Easy management of gates
The gates used in a round yard typically get a lot of use. They should be easy to open with one hand, for easy access when taking the horse in and out multiple times in a day. They should be designed to help in effective functionality and improve the everyday management of the property and horses.
It will be worth learning more about how to choose the right fence gates.
Factor #6 Maintenance of the horse fence
No matter what type of fencing you choose, it will require some level of maintenance to keep it in good condition. Wood fencing, for example, may need to be painted or stained regularly to prevent rot and weather damage, while steel fencing may need to be checked for rust and corrosion. If you are using rubber it needs to be kept fixed and tight not sagging. Flexible rails should always be tightly tensioned.
What are the different Post and Rail horse fencing solutions for your round yard?
There are several materials to choose from when it comes to a round yard, including Timber, flexible plastic, and steel. Each has its advantages and disadvantages in terms of durability, cost, and maintenance requirements.
Based on the above-listed factors, let’s evaluate three of the most common post and rail fencing options and see which one fits your needs and budget.
Timber Post and Rail Fencing
Timber Post and Rail fencing has the advantage of being strong and can be customised to fit the requirement of a longer post and higher fencing as needed for the effective functioning of a round yard. It ticks all of the boxes for a good horse fencing solution except two.
- Timber fencing could be too rigid and might compromise the safety of your horses. If they or the rider fall on the fencing during training, the stiffness of the Timber might prove to be detrimental and cause an injury.
- Timber fencing tends to rot and decay. Compared to steel posts and rail fencing, Timber requires more maintenance and has shorterlife dependent on timber type and environmental surrounds.
Steel Post and Rail Fencing
Steel Post and Rail fencing gives you much-needed strength, adds a solid base for the bottom rail and is easy to maintain. It can also be cut into any length of post and rail as required to meet the height specifications for your round yard.
However, it’s worth noting that while our Premium Steel Post and Rail offers better quality, aesthetics and safety, Cattle Rail will be more suitable for round yards. This is because Premium Steel Post and Rail has a recommended installed height of 1.4 meters, which is lower than the height recommended for the right horse fencing of a round yard.
However, using only Steel posts and Rail fencing is not a good option.
- Cattle Rail is very rigid and when used as the only fencing on a round yard has the potential of causing serious injury to the horse and the trainer or rider.
- Cattle Rail is more expensive than Timber Post and Rail Fencing.
Horserail or Flexible Plastic Fencing
Horserail offers a safe solution and can be customised to match the size specifications of the round yard fencing.
However, it isn’t strong enough to be used as the only type of fencing. Horserail is not solid enough to be used in the bottom half of the round yard.
Which is the best horse fencing solution for a round yard?
The best horse fencing solution for your round yard is a combination of two different types of fencing.
You can either choose a combination of steel and flexible rail or timber and Horserail. A combination will give you the best of both worlds and can prove to be the ideal fencing solution.
While Steel or Timber can be used for the posts and bottom half which is solid to retain the base and prevent Horse leg entanglement, the top half can be lined with 3 rails of horserail providing safety and flexibility.
Before you make the final decision, it’s a good idea to stay prepared for the hidden costs of Timber fencing.
The Steel Post and Rail fencing could also benefit from an extra layer of protection and some look enhancements. This can be achieved with high-quality steel fence paints.
As you consider a combination of timber or steel fencing with flexible rail, it might be worth noting that at some horse properties, the bottom half is covered in rubber for softer impact or just left as a solid timber lining. However, you need to consider the aesthetics of your entire property and see which option matches your vision and budget
Confident to choose the right horse fencing for your round yard?
You were looking for the perfect fencing solution for your round yard. Now you have the perfect checklist to tick off before you make your final decision. You can confidently evaluate different post and rail fencing solutions and make an informed decision.
Learning about the 5 most common mistakes that horse property owners make while choosing a horse fence can also help you avoid costly mistakes on your journey.
In the end, the decision depends on your preference, availability, and cost. If you have more questions, one of our fencing experts can help you select the best horse fencing for your specific needs. Feel free to reach out and get a personalised consultation free of cost, free of any obligations to purchase and free of unnecessary follow-ups.