Even the gentlest snaffle is a severe tool in the wrong hands, and the same goes for hackamores.
I only recommend them for horses that really need them, or for Intermediate to Advanced riders who have the delicacy in their hands and seat to ride without sitting on the horses head
I had a gelding who had a fit about bits (mouth fine!) but absolutely adored his halter or hackamore. He's one of those horses that needed it :)
And what I mean with the delicacy of the hands, I rode another gelding who could absolutely not stand you being in his mouth
. If you balanced on the reins, or used them to repeatedly slow him down (versus your seat and legs), he would start to rear and have a fit. Henceforth, not for beginners, who are generally learning how to balance with the seat and legs and maybe unknowingly use the reins and bit to balance as well.
For a more schooled rider, absolutely perfect mount. You just have to know how to click in with the hands, seat, and legs versus with the reins.
He'd put up with reined steering and stopping, but more pressure then absolutely needed? Nosir. Has regular teeth upkeep done too, just one of those horses.