Úrvalshestar offer a unique program where students can come and stay for a longer period of time to learn how to train horses. The program includes extensive practical training and is based on giving students the opportunity to learn new techniques and practice them until they have been mastered. The learning program consists of lectures and demonstrations as well as riding lessons, both private and in a group. There are between 3 - 6 working students at Holtsmúli at any given time and each student receives instruction suited to his / her competency level.
The Equine Studies Program curriculum is divided into levels. When a student is competent at doing the tasks at his / her level, the student can take a test to finish the level. Upon a successful completion of each of the tests, the student will receive a diploma issued by Úrvalshestar.
The syllabuses for each of the levels are available below. We teach in English.
At the beginning of the program both the student and Úrvalshestar sign a contract. This contract lists the responsibilities of both parties.
As a general rule, we only accept students staying for a minimum of six months. Applications for longer time periods get priority over applications in which the student wants to stay for a shorter time.
While staying in Holtsmúli, students get a place to stay, and good lunch on weekdays. The working student receives a certain amount of money each month based on his progress through the levels. The amount increases as the student passes more tests:
- From the start of contract until completion of 1. level: 60.000 icelandic kronur per month
- At completion of 1. level: 90.000 icelandic kronur per month
- At completion of 2. level: 120.000 icelandic kronur per month
- At completion of 3rd level payment per month is negotiated between the student and Úrvalshestar.
Students living at Holtsmúli receive accommodation in a small house, called Þórukot. The house has three bedrooms, a kitchen and a living room for students to watch TV, rest and relax. Students live in single or double bedrooms. Þórukot has a washing machine and wireless internet connection.
Trips to shop for groceries and other necessities are available once per week. It is crucial that working students bring warm clothing, riding boots (with a heel) and a riding helmet. Other necessary items:
- Riding breeches
- Thermal underwear
- Warm coat and sweaters
- Rain gear
- Wool socks
- Warm gloves
- Hat that can be worn under helmet