My Epiphany Paradise Farm – Robin Broughton

Portable and Permanent Stall Mats fitting the bill for multiple uses

By Brett Hart

After more than 50 years in the horse industry, ranging from rodeoing to jumping to reining, Robin Broughton, is sharing her paradise with hunter/jumper and dressage horses. My Epiphany Paradise Farm Robin Broughton Greatmats

Her farms, My Epiphany Stables in Wadsworth, Illinois, and My Epiphany Paradise Farm in Kidder, Missouri, offer spaces for retirement and rehabilitation for these equine companions.

The current focus of My Epiphany Paradise Farm, a spinoff of her other farm which was founded in 2004 and focuses on rehab, is being a long-term retirement facility for horses.

My Epiphany Paradise Farm Horse Pasture Greatmats

”Because not all horses are able to be rehabbed due to their injuries, my clients were always asking for referrals to retirement farms for their horses,” Broughton said. ”Many of them had asked why I did not start my own retirement facility. They knew me. They trusted me; and it would be a natural transition for those horses who were unable to make it through rehabilitation at my Illinois farm to transition to a retirement farm owned by me.”

In the spring of 2012, Robin sat down with her parents, Keith and Arlene Wilcox, and came up with a plan to turn their family beef farm into a long-term retirement farm for hunter/jumpers. That September, they opened their gates and formed an LLC with officers that included Robin’s husband, George, and sister, Niki McCabe.

Arlene became the primary caretaker of the horses while Keith handled pasture management and maintenance among other duties. Five years later, My Epiphany Paradise Farm is the home to 30 retirees, ranging from 11 to 33 years of age. Last year, it also began accepting young horses that needed a place to grow up before beginning their performance life.

The Need for Stall Mats
In the early years of My Epiphany Paradise Farm, the crew worked out of an older cattle barn with dirt floors. When Robin began researching portable stall mats online for the limited times in which they would need the barn for veterinary or farrier work, or inclement weather, she kept coming back to Greatmats.com because if its in-depth information and apparent quality.
My Epiphany Paradise Farm Horse Barn Greatmats
As the farm’s popularity grew, Robin decided to build a new barn and arena on the back side of the farm. At that time, she began researching permanent mats and again chose Greatmats, this time going with pre-sized Horse Stall Mat Kits due to their ability to be easily installed over limestone without slipping over time.

My Epiphany Paradise Farm Horse Barn Greatmats Interlocking Horse Stall Mats

”They are built to last, great quality, came numbered so that we just followed the schematic to install,” she said. ”There was no cutting, cursing or overheating in putting them in. … Awesome!”

With her new 3,800-plus square foot barn housing 10 stalls and featuring run-out all-weather paddocks off each stall, Robin plans to move the entire Illinois rehabilitation program to the new barn where the bigger stalls, runs, round pen and additional paddocks will be able to service even more injured horses dealing with suspensories, tendon tears, ligament injuries, etc. And with its new 80×184 foot indoor arena, Robin and her staff can work on the fitness rehabilitation of the horses after they’ve recovered from their injuries.

My Epiphany Paradise Farm Horse Stall Greatmats Horse Stall Mats

With that being said, the retirement program will continue is its current form, only more acreage will be added, bringing the total area of My Epiphany Paradise Farm to 200 acres.

Even with the new permanent mats, Robin is still making use of her Greatmats portable horse stall mats for all the same uses as before, along with entryways on the ground for her living quarter trailers, in her stock trailers for short hauls, and in temporary stalls with concrete floors when she brings her horses to shows.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Robin Broughton
My Epiphany Paradise Farm, LLC
Kidder MO 64649
For more on this topic please review our Horse Stall Mats product page.
Advertisements

13 Horse Trainers Compete for National Honor

Greatmats National Horse Trainer of the Year LogoMilltown, WI – They come from all different walks of life, but something these 13 horse trainers have in common is the fact that they are making a positive impact in their communities through their work with horses and beyond.

The following 13 horse trainers, representing 10 different states, have been nominated for the honor of National Horse Trainer of the Year, and award presented annually by Greatmats.

From Nov. 16 to 30, 2017, voting will be open to the public on Greatmats Facebook page as it weighs in on which two trainers will be named finalists for the award. The winner will receive horse stall mats, or a cash option, from Greatmats, which is in its third year of hosting the contest.

This year’s nominees are as follows.

 

California

Ashley Salter of iRide4U in Santa Ynez

Colorado

Justin Dunn of Justin Dunn Horesemanship in Guffey

Frances Carbonnel of Mariah Farms in Castle Rock

Kentucky

Kelly Murphy-Alley of Striking KMA Performance Horses in Willmore

Beth Harris of Walnut Way Farm in Simpsonville

Michigan

Bill Brown of Chase Lake Equestrian Center in Fowlerville

North Carolina

TR Potts of Potts Performance Horses in Fountain In

Tennessee

Chrystal Crispin of Crispin Unlimited in Jonesborough

Texas

Jeremy Dull of Jeremy Dull Horsemanship in Hempstead

West Virginia

Mike Hurst of Mike Hurst Horsemanship in Philippi

Wisconsin

Sharlyn Fellenz of Mytalisha’s Dream Riding Center in Eau Claire

Bryanna Larson of Pony Tales Refuge and Rehab in Colfax

 

Learn more about the 2017 National Horse Trainer of the Year Award and how to vote for your favorite trainer at https://www.greatmats.com/horse-stall-mats/greatmats-annual-national-horse-trainer-of-the-year-contest.php

As part of its 3rd annnual National Award Series, Greatmats is also presenting awards to to Martial Arts Instructors, Cheerleading Coaches, Personal Trainers, Dog Trainers and Dance Instructors. Learn more about the National Award Series at https://www.greatmats.com/greatmats-national-instructor-of-the-year-awards-series.php.

Cottonwood Riding Club Loving Interlocking Horse Stall Mats

93-acre Riding Club is Largest Horse Boarding Facility in Colorado

By Brett Hart

Tara Gandomcar-Hieb of Cottonwood Riding Club in Littleton, Colorado, has become a horse stall mat connoisseur of sorts after being in the horse business with her family for the last 35 years.

Cottonwood Riding Club horse boarding logo GreatmatsShe and her sister, Erica, recently took over the family business, the largest boarding facility in the state of Colorado, which is home to more than 170 horses on the riding club’s 93 acres.

”We’re second generation at this barn so a lot of what we’re doing now is updating the barns that were built 25 years ago,” Tara said. ”We’re a large boarding and training facility, so we have two box stalls,” Tara said. ”Those have the old non interlocking mats.”

cottonwoodWhen we revamping the breezeway barn, which has open sides, it discovered Greatmats’ interlocking stall mats.

”There are no shavings allowed in that barn,” Tara said. ”I needed something to protect the horses from laying on the gravel and still not slip around on the ice. The non interlocking mats peel up and curl up the edges, so the horses were tripping and people were tripping.”

They started with updating some 11.5×20 foot stalls with custom cut interlocking horse stall mats from Greatmats.

”I love the interlocking mats,” Tara said, which led her to use them again when they built a new barn in 2016. ”It’s easier for my guys to clean. It’s better for the ladies walking around. The horses – they’re not tripping and have less thrush and foot issues.”

Cottonwood Riding Club horse boarding GreatmatsNow, with four barns, Cottonwood Riding Club has equipped its newest 23-stall barn with a 12×12-foot mat stall mat system over chip gravel.

”Every stall has it’s own little drainage system,” Tara said, noting that the cleanliness of her facility is one of the reasons its become the most popular boarding facility in the state. Adding the interlocking stall mats has helped keep the reputation in order.

”Before, the stalls were not completely matted – Mats in front and dirt in the back.” Tara said. ”That definitely made that barn more sellable. Having the horses on a completely matted surface. It just looks cleaner so it’s more appealing. … Shavings and dirt and everything get underneath the corners of the non interlocking mats.

Tara Gandomcar Hieb owner of Cottonwood Riding Club horse boarding GreatmatsAnother big selling point for Gandomcar-Hieb was the fact that the Greatmats stall mats came with 12 year warranty.

”It was a dollar per square foot more expensive than the non interlocking mat, but worth the expense in the long run,” Tara said. ”It’s nice to have the new technology.”

”Our first barn was sort of the test for it and we’ve definitely noticed that that is an easier situation,” she added. ”You can go to a feed store and get mats that are a dollar a square foot cheaper, but you’re going to be fiddling around with it every year. It’s less labor. Labor is time and time is money.”

home gym
To learn more about Cottonwood Ride Club, read this article published in the Littleton Independent or visit its website.

Tara Gandomcar-Hieb
Cottonwood Riding Club
Littleton CO 80125
For more on this topic please review our Horse Stall Mats product page.

Why the fuss over stall flooring? How comfortable are you sleeping in your bathroom?

Horse stall floor

Horse stall flooring can make a world of difference in health and happiness of your equine companion.

Sure, you can get by with topsoil, clay, sand, concrete or even asphalt as the flooring surface for your horse stalls. But don’t you think your equine companion deserves better? You want your horses in the right state of mind and physical condition when you ask them to carry you down the trail, in a competition or even in a parade. Making them comfortable (and healthy) in the barn can make a world of difference, and it starts with good flooring – in their stalls and even aisles and wash bays.

An ideal horse stall floor should be durable, easy on the horses’ feet and legs, dry, odor resistant, skid resistant, low maintenance and easy to clean.

When you consider that a 1,000 pound horse produces more than 30 pounds of feces and almost 2 ½ gallons of urine each day, “dry and clean” can be tricky to maintain. That’s where proper drainage and floor surfacing can play a big role. Water resistant or waterproof floors must be sloped to allow for drainage, and bedding is often used to soak up the rest of the urine. Porous floors allow the urine to seep away through a sand, gravel or crushed stone foundation.

Rubber or plastic grid mats, while expensive, provide all of the necessary requirements when used in conjunction with a compacted subfloor and topped with another material such as soil. This combination allows for drainage, prevents damage and wear from pawing and will not retain bacteria-laden odors that can cause respiratory problems in horses.

Impervious stall flooring

temporary interlocking rubber horse stall mat

Interlocking edges help keep stall mats in place – even during temporary installations.

If you don’t have the funds to create this complex, but highly effective, stall flooring system, rubber stall mats may just be your answer. Solid rubber mats are extremely durable and can reduce or even eliminate the need for bedding to provide cushion. They also provide solid footing, a long life span, low maintenance and easy cleaning. Installed over an even, compact surface, rubber horse stall mats should be textured on top for grip and grooved on the bottom to prevent moisture from becoming trapped. They can have straight or interlocking edges, but keep in mind that straight-edged mats may be difficult to keep in place and may need to be anchored to the floor. Rubber stall mats are easy to clean, but take care not to damage the surface if using a pitch fork.

Other solid surfaces, such as concrete or asphalt are durable, low maintenance, easy to clean and disinfect and will not retain odors. However, they are hard on the horses legs, can retain moisture and may discourage laying down, therefore, increasing the need for bedding or rubber matting. Improper installation can cause cracking, chipping and sanitation problems due to urine getting trapped in surface irregularities. They do add a unique benefit in that, in good condition, they are rodent proof.

Porous stall flooring

Porous flooring materials such as topsoil, clay and sand are easy on the legs and are non slip, but lack durability and can be hard to clean, disinfect and maintain. Each of these flooring solutions need to be replaced frequently, offsetting the initial benefit of low pricing. While topsoil and sand can absorb wetness, clay is questionable in that category. Although topsoil and clay do absorb moisture, they can also retain it too long and may freeze hard during the winter. Sand and clay both serve as noise buffers but vary greatly on their effects on horse feet. Clay keeps hooves moist while sand has a drying effect.

Two other common flooring options for horse stalls are wood and a road base mix. Wood is easy on the legs and warm to lie upon. Rough wood has good traction but can become slippery when wet. It also has a high initial expense, can be prone to insect and rodent damage and must be checked often for signs of wear. Wood absorbs odors and bacteria and is difficult to clean due to its porosity.

Road base mixes vary greatly in size of particles, but are generally made primarily of limestone or granite – the smaller the rocks the better. It is easily leveled and compacted and provides good drainage, but can become hard and unforgiving much like concrete.

Aisle flooring

rubber brick paver for horse barn aisles

Rubber brick pavers make are a stylish solution for alleyways at equine facilities.

Your horses’ comfort and safety doesn’t stop at the stall. It extends to the barn alleys and wash areas and, depending on the layout of your barn, may even include the feed and tack rooms. Much like the stalls, aisles should be durable, dry, skidproof and easy to clean. Wide aisles used for exercising horses should have a sandy footing much like that of a riding arena. Smaller aisles, where horses are simply walked to and from their stalls should be treated much like the stalls themselves. The exception is, alleyway floors should always redirect water instead of absorbing. Sloping is critical and drains are recommended along the sides. Once again, grid mats are a top choice if you can afford it. Another strong option for aisles are rubber paving bricks, which provide excellent shock absorption and make it easy to control dust and bacteria at a much lower cost than traditional bricks which can retain bacteria. While the aesthetic value of bricks is hard to beat, soil upheaval and/or poor installation of any brick surface can result in a uneven surface and tripping hazards. Solid rubber or rolled rubber mats eliminate the concern over uneven surfaces, assuming they are installed over a properly leveled and compacted surface. All other forms of flooring leave holes in one or more of the essential components of a proper horse barn aisle.

Wash bay flooring

buttontopWhen considering flooring for your equine wash bays, make sure the floor does not get slippery when wet and is impervious to water. Drains and grates are essential. The best wash bay flooring materials are rough concrete, textured rubber mats over concrete, and sealed, large aggregate asphalt. Again, the floor should be sloped toward a drain that is away from where the horse will be standing as drain covers may cause a safety concern.

When it comes to horse stall flooring, you get what you pay for. A little extra investment in time and materials up front can make for a happy and healthy relationship for years to come between you and your horse.

Portable Horse Stall Mats Pebble

Keep your horse stalls cleaner with Pebble Mats from Greatmats.  Where dirt floors get dug up and sloppy, these mats will keep your floor level and easy to clean.  Plus, they provide a comfortable, safer standing environment for your animals.  These super high density EVA foam mats are excellent for both portable stalls and permanent installations. These stall mats are a great alternative to more costly rubber mats.

Greatmats interlocking portable stall mats are the perfect lightweight yet durable solution as horse trailer mats, portable horse stalls, and temporary horse stalls. These mats are designed to withstand years of use under the weight of heavy animals.
Pebble Mats can be used almost anywhere including stalls and aisleways but please note: you will NOT want to expose them to direct sunlight for any length of time.  That’s because the foam will expand and contract with direct sunlight or significant humidity changes.
These horse stall mats are waterproof and simple to clean.  Hose them off and you’re good to go.  They are safe for your horses because they are lead and latex free.  They also provide excellent traction for you and the animals.  They are lightweight and easy to install and have absolutely no odor.
Each mat measures 2×2’.   Interlocking edge design allows for easy installation with no glue or tape.   They come with a one-year warranty. 


If this particular stall mat is not perfect for your application, please consider one of our other mats.   We also offer horse stall mats in interlocking rubber tiles and offer rubber by the roll.
Call Greatmats at 877-822-6622.