Horse Trainers in the United States

Going back in time...

Until a few years ago, the only way to get certified as an Icelandic horse instructor and trainer was to go to Europe and to get certified going through a European program . a rather costly, time consuming and difficult option for most of us especially considering the need to speak the local language.

Historically, The main certifying countries for trainers working in the US were Iceland and Germany.

FEIF and its role in the trainer education

FEIF (International Federation of Icelandic Horse Associations) aims for an international acknowledgement of comparable qualifications and invited its member countries to sign an agreement accordingly. Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Iceland, the Netherlands, Norway, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, and the USA originally signed the agreement.

At the same time, FEIF developed an education matrix to provide a guideline for minimum requirements for established trainer programs in member countries and help other countries form programs.

USIHC Trainer Certification

Based on the FEIF Trainer Matrix, the United States Icelandic Horse Congress now has a tool available to offer a certification in the US. The trainer education is based on a program developed and acknowledged by all signing FEIF member countries and ensures a certain quality standard from participants completing the program.

The connection

Trainers and instructors certified in all participating FEIF member countries are listed on the FEIF web site. Each trainer or instructor is listed with the FEIF level equavalent to his national title. For example, an indivdual holding a German "Trainer C" certification from IPZV is listed on the FEIF site as "FEIF Level 1".

Certified Trainers and Instructors in the US

Throughout the US, there are a growing number of individuals who have been educated specifically in training the Icelandic Horse. As a service to our members, we would like to list all certified trainers within the US and provide a summary of the most common certification programs. Much of the information available on the Internet from these sources is not available in English. The USIHC has developed an overview of these trainer programs to help Icelandic Horse owners by providing this resource.

This information was prepared and reviewed in the spring of 2009. It is not intended to be an exhaustive comparison of the programs; but to serve as an overview of the relative levels of education offered:

Certifying AgencyOffical
Program Summary
Hólar College and Félag Tamningamanna (FT) in Iceland Hólar/FT Trainer
3 Years
IPZV, the German Icelandic Horse Association IPZV Trainer
4 Levels
FEIF, the international federation of Icelandic Horse associations FEIF Trainer
3 Levels

Individuals who have completed the necessary requirements to be certified by one of these programs are listed below. The Congress does not endorse any of these individuals. This information is provided as a resource for Icelandic Horse owners in their search for trainers. You should interview any potential trainer to confirm the trainer's experience is appropriate for you and your horse. Please contact if you believe any of the following information is factually inaccurate.

Laura Benson
Valkyrie IcelandicHorses & Equestrian Arts
1 Duane st. Apt. -33
Redwood City, CA 94062
(650) 281-4108
FT, Holar Graduate, Trainer C
Certified in Iceland
Carrie Brandt

P.O. Box 7
Eminence, KY 40019
(502) 409-1924
FT, Holar Graduate, Trainer C
Certified in Iceland
Amelie Brewster

618 Carroll Street, Apt. 3
Brooklyn, NY 11215
(646) 709-2526
IPZV Trainer B
Certified in Germany
Sigrun Brynjarsdottir
Solheimar Farm
387 Strafford Road
Tunbridge, VT 05077
(802) 889-9472
FT Trainer
Certified in Iceland
Will Covert
Flying C Ranch
3600 Roblar Ave.
Santa Ynez, CA 93460
(805) 688-1393
FT Trainer
Certified in Iceland
Alexandra Dannenmann
Florida Icehorsefarm
10551 Deal Road
North Fort Myers, FL 33917
(239) 223-5403
IPZV Trainer B
Certified in Germany
Coralie Denmeade
Tamangur Icelandic Horses
P.O. Box 2771
Monument, CO 80132
(719) 209-2312
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in United States
Nicki Esdorn

121 Cantitoe Street
Katonah, NY 10536
(914) 826-5159
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in United States
Ann-Christin Kloth

S75W36395 Wilton Road
Eagle, WI 53119
(262) 470-7103
IPZV Trainer B
Certified in Germany
Sara Lyter
372 John Weaver Rd
Columbus, NC 28722
(828) 712-8658
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in Germany
Jana Meyer
108 Gilley Road
Tunbridge, VT 05077
(603) 856-6697
IPZV Trainer B
Certified in Germany
Florie Miller
963 County Road 117
Glenwood Springs, CO 81601
(970) 309-3695
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in United States
Janet Mulder

6800 E 99th Ave.
Anchorage, AK 99507
(907) 351-4473
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in United States
Alexandra Pregitzer
730 Phillips Drive
Oxford, MI 48371
(608) 436-1751
IPZV Trainer C
Certified in Germany
Dawn Shaw
Lone Cedar Icelandic Horses
PO Box 524
Grapeview, WA 98546
(360) 275-7542
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in United States
Bernie Willis
Arctic Arrow Farm
7362 West Parks Hwy -246
Wasilla, AK 99654
(907) 357-4233
FEIF International Trainer Level 1
Certified in Germany

Continuing Education Requirements

Trainers holding a certificate are required to submit proof of continuing education in order to stay current.

Proof of participation in minimum one (1) educational pre-approved seminar every 2 years, by submitting the confirmation letter signed by the clinician (download here).


If a trainer is not able to provide proof of currency, their license will be suspended and they will be removed from the trainer section of the USIHC webpage. In order to reinstate their license, a trainer has to catch-up on the missing proof by attending a educational seminar within 2 years after the license has been suspended. In case a trainer does not provide any proof of currency within 2 years of license suspension, they will have to participate in a trainer licensing course again, to have another license issued.


This requirement is effective as of April 1st, 2017 for existing trainers and 2 years from the certification date for new trainers.