I/I polo is played in the arena under the USPA Official Arena Rules with such modifications as outlined in the USPA I/I Tournament Conditions. One modification is that I/I games are played using a “split string.” The intent and purpose of mandating split horse strings in I/I Polo is to create a fair opportunity for both teams to play the same horses under the same conditions while reducing the expense by not transporting horses for games. One team will play a string of horses in the first chukker and the other team will play those same horses in the third chukker. Many teams have their own horses to provide for games and tournaments, however, some teams some teams are only able to participate in the I/I Program by borrowing horses from other I/I schools/clubs.

I/I teams must have a minimum of three qualified players on the team, and most teams will have alternate players available. A qualified player is a current USPA member who meets all USPA I/I eligibility requirements as defined in the USPA I/I Tournament Conditions.

All I/I teams, provided they meet USPA eligibility requirements, have the opportunity to compete in postseason tournaments. Teams will compete against other I/I teams in regular season games in order to qualify for their respective regional tournaments. The winners of each regional tournament will advance to the USPA National Championship. Tournaments begin in early February and end mid-April while the I/I regular season begins as early as September.


The USPA runs over 30 I/I tournaments each season and currently spends approximately $15,000.00 on each of those tournaments. The USPA will arrange for a suitable host site, USPA certified umpires, a USPA tournament manager, horses to mount all teams, tournament awards and other equipment for running matches at all USPA I/I tournaments. Tournament All-Stars, Sportsmanship recipients, Best Playing Ponies and Best Playing Strings are recognized at all USPA I/I tournaments.