Lovesthesaddlebreds- that is very similar to what I have done as well. My trainer actually asks me to keep my hands low so that the horse will be more encouraged to lower his head instead of holding it up, hollowing the back and then "freight training" as we call it. If I put my hands forward and abandon contact (even for a couple of seconds) I loose everything with this guy.
Tiny- I think I have heard of what you are talking about but I always thought people would "see-saw" the bit while the head was low which simply makes the horse appear to be rounded and on the bit even though he is not. I've heard other people say that they "wiggle the outside rein." I agree that its a terrible idea and judges know if you are on the bit or not regardless of tricks.
Coffee- I think there is also something to be said about not looking pretty while training. Just because he doesn't look like an upper level dressage horse doesn't mean you're not doing the right thing! Good luck! =)