Icelandic Horse riding is a growing discipline in Iceland and many other countries. The growth of this discipline will be built in large part on the building of knowledge and skill of our riders. Holar University College developed Knapamerki (e. Icelandic Riding Levels) in Iceland in order to build up and develop both the theoretical and practical knowledge of Icelandic Horse riders. The program supports the growing interest in Icelandic horse riding by increasing access to organized, systematic and detailed teaching based upon classical principles.
The main goals are:
Produce knowledgeable recreational or competitive horse people and support the growth of horse friendly classical riding principles in Icelandic Riding.
The program is split into five levels, each containing both a theoretical and practical component and spans from beginning principles to more advanced training. Books, volumes 1-4, translated into English, are available at each level to educate the rider on the corresponding theoretical knowledge. Each level has a corresponding ridden and theoretical exam, giving participants both a goal to work towards as well as a detailed evaluation of their progress. Riders who pass the fifth level in the system are considered to be ready for advanced training opportunities such as professional work and university level equine studies at Holar University College.
The history, background and breeding of Icelandic horses.
The connection and cooperation between human and horse.
The aids and their proper use.
The riding arena and its use.
The reins and basic rein-holds.
Work in hand.
Gaits and gait transitions.
Riding in the open.