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AVA Horsemanship

Horsecare Leadership

American Vaulting Association

The American Vaulting Association Horsemanship Program has been established to promote the development of confident, safe, well educated vaulters, lungers, trainers, riders, coaches, and horse owners. The AVA Horsemanship Program provides an educational curriculum and standards of proficiency in horsemanship as well as recognition of excellence in horsemanship for AVA members through evaluations/testing and certification of proficiency. In addition AVA members may also receive recognition of excellence in vaulting skills through the AVA Medal Testing Program.


HP Level 1 – explores the fundamentals of horse care and introduces beginning skills with an emphasis on safety for both, the horse and the handler as well as having fun.


HP Level 2- expands on the basic skills and knowledge of daily horse care while developing an understanding of the reasons for good basic horsemanship.


HP Level 3- encourages learning to become an active horseman able to care independently for their horse and equipment while demonstrating an increased understanding of good horsemanship. Riding skills are introduced at this level in addition to groundwork and handling of the horse.


HP Level 4- covers more advanced horse management knowledge and skills and requires a greater depth of knowledge reflecting more awareness, competence, and self-analysis in the care and handling of the horse and in teaching those same skills to others.


HP Level 5- recognizes the mastery of good horsemanship reflecting confidence, competence and in depth knowledge, the ability to train and teach with tact and effectiveness, as well as demonstrate the passion to pursue further knowledge and proficiency in their career with horses.


AVA encourages the following progression to be used for vaulter development and for volunteer and coach/lunger/horse trainer development.

Vaulter Development

HP Level 1 – Novice Trot Pin/Trot Medal

HP Level 2 – Novice Canter Pin

HP Level 3 - Bronze Medal

HP Level 4 – Silver Medal

HP Level 5 - Gold Medal


Volunteer and Coach/Lunger/Horse Trainer Development

HP Level 1 – Volunteering to Help with Horses

HP Level 2 – Volunteering with Horses/Horse Handler

HP Level 3 - Training to be a Coach/Lunger/Horse Trainer

HP Level 4 – Assistant Coaches/Lungers/Horse Trainers

HP Level 5 - Coaches/Lungers/Horse Trainers

Click here for Standards of Proficiency For Horsemanship Levels 1 and 2

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