About Icelandic Horses.
The Icelandic Horse has a thousand year history. They have been purebred since the 10th century, the Icelandic Horse is known for being hardy, athletic, independent, spirited, friendly, adaptable, and sure-footed, with five natural gaits. These gaits are known as the Walk, Trot, Canter, Tölt, and Flying Pace. The horses tend to average 13 to 14 hands tall, the Icelandic Horse is a versatile family riding horse, bred to carry adults at a fast pleasing gait over long distances. It is distinctive for its thick and often double-sided mane and long tail, and remarkable for its wide range of colors. In addition to formal horse shows and competitions, Icelandic Horses are able to adapt to most disciplines of riding. They have done well in Dressage, Jumping, long-distance riding, trail competitions. Icelandics are great for pleasure/trail or competitions.
Icelandic Stallion, Eidur fra Oddholi, ridden in Tolt.
Tolt: is a smooth 4-beated gait. The favorite gait to ride! The Tolt can be ridden in different speeds. Slow to Fast. Great for riders with bad backs! The Tolt can be ridden on many different terrains and distances.
Byrda fra Hafsteinsstodum ridden in Trot.
Trot: is a steady 2-beat movement. This gait has a period of suspension. The horse springs from one diagonal to the other. In between these springs, all four legs are off the ground. Since the trot has two beats each stride and a moment in mid-air, it is more comfortable for the rider (and the horse) to rise up and down every-other beat (this is called "posting"). The trot can also be ridden in a half-seat or sitting trot.
Prins fra Armoti ridden in Walk.
Walk: is a 4-beated gait. The horse always has two or three hooves on the ground. The walk is the slowest natural gait.
A video by Kathy Sierra about Icelandic Horses.
Spuni frá Vesturkóti in flying pace at Landsmót 2014
Landsmot 2012. 5-gait. Stakkur frá Halldórsstöðum ridden by Sigurbjörn Bárðarson in Flying Pace.
Flying pace: is used as a racing/ sprinting gait. Flying pace is a lateral 2-beated gait, used for mostly for racing.
Byrda fra Hafsteinsstodum ridden in Canter.
Canter: is a 3-beated gait. This gait has a period of suspension after each stride. This gait starts with the hind leg then leads to the front in a rocking motion. When you canter, you keep your seat in the saddle (unlike the trot). Before learning to canter, make sure your balance and rhythm stays consistent with the horse during the trot.
Haeringur fra Oslandi and Krista
Icelandic Horses are also known for their fantastic temperaments. They are easy to work with and have great characters!