In this study, the behaviour of short rigid piles founded in sand subjected to a lateral load applied at a certain height above sand surface has been investigated. For this purpose, a series of small-scale model tests have been conducted both in loose and dense sand conditions. In the experimental studies, the effects of pile embedment length, pile diameter, the geometry of pile's cross-section and pile material on the lateral load capacity have been explored. The results obtained from experimental studies indicate that the relative ground density significantly affect the lateral load capacity. However, the equivalent circular area assumption used by existing analytical approaches produces conservative lateral load capacities, especially in loose sand conditions.