Rider Level Program

Equestrian Canada Learn to Ride Program

     The Equestrian Canada (EC) Learn to Ride Programs are aimed at individuals who wish to become well-rounded horse people, who are able to care for and ride their horses in a correct and safe manner and wish to be recognized for doing so at a national level.

Each Discipline in the Learn to Ride program is divided into progressive levels, building on stable management and practical horse care skills, riding skills and abilities and equestrian knowledge that will help candidates enjoy horses and the sport in a safe and measurable way.

The English Discipline has 10 successive levels and the Western Discipline has 4. English Jumping phases can be omitted at any level. 

Knowledge, experience and skills are developed through lessons and clinics, with additional materials and information being found in EC Learn to Ride manuals and the Stable Management in Canada handbook. This program is designed to be administered by EC certified instructors/coaches. These instructors/coaches have pursued certification through an accredited national program, and have been provided with additional training, manuals and guidelines on preparing and administering the Learn to Ride program.

Each Learn to Ride level is made up of a theoretical written test, a practical stable management component and a riding component. For each successful level, candidates will receive a nationally recognized certificate and badge.

Join us today! This program is for everyone, whether your goal is to be a recreational, leisure or competitive rider! Work at your own pace and take all the time you need to build your skills and have fun with your equine partner!

How to take part in the Learn to Ride Program

1. Membership * Purchase your IHC Membership

2. Study Materials * Highly recommended to purchase the Learn to Ride Manuals and Stable Management in Canada handbook;  covering Stable Management, Horse Handling and Riding Skills. Equestrian Canada Certificates are issued upon completion of the program. 

Manuals for the Learn to Ride and other programs can be picked up in person at the Island Horse Council Office room 208 of the Sport P.E.I. building. 40 Enman Crescent, Charlottetown. Office hours are Tuesdays 2-6 pm.

Other arrangements may be made for delivery.  It is advised to contact ahead to place your order by emailing

English Manuals  are available in levels 1-2, 3-5, and 6-8   Western Manuals are available in levels 1-4 (For those wishing to continue on to become an Equestrian Canada Certified Western Instructor, Rider Level 4 is required )

3. Contact a Coach * Contact a current and certified Western or English coach or instructor to begin preparation for your tests. Contact the IHC Coaching Coordinator at for the most up-to-date coaching information.

4. When your instructor/coach feels you are ready, they can select and apply for a test date by filling out a Rider Level Host Application Form, as well as Candidate Application Form for each rider, and submitting it to the IHC office or Coaching Coordinator. For the most up-to-date list of Evaluators in your area, please contact the  Coaching Coordinator.

5. Applications and fees must be submitted to IHC a minimum of two weeks before your proposed testing date. Once approved, evaluators will be contacted and you may proceed to testing.

  • Learn to Ride fees are $10 per level
  • If challenging more than one level at a time, it is a $20 fee

6. Testing day! 

  • Please review Learn to Ride Study Guide for written tests, and Rubrics for all other component requirements.
  • English Jumping phases may be omitted at all levels and Flat Only certificates can be issued.

Completed testing and marking sheets are submitted to IHC by the Evaluator.

7 . Certification * Your successful Learn to Ride certificate and badge will be mailed or delivered to you.

8. Continuing Education * You can continue to work towards your next Learn to Ride level!

 Western INTERMEDIATE RIDER & Basic Training

For those wishing to continue on to become an Equestrian Canada Certified Western Competition Coach, upon completion of Rider Level 4, riders may continue on to Basic Training which is a continuation of the Learn To Ride Program at a more advance level.

Please note: Learn to Ride Levels are self-paced and led by the rider and instructor/coach and do not require registration prior to beginning. It is up to the rider and instructor/coach to set up testing dates and locations and book evaluators. IHC does not regulate evaluator fees that are charged for their time, but it is recommended that they do not exceed the cost of a usual lesson fee of the same duration.

Start Your Journey today!!

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