Lately, the vaquero methods have been a point of fascination for me, and I would like the horses I work with to embody the qualities of a true 'snaffle' horse, and eventually, perhaps work up to a spade bit. Not for a few years, when I can study under someone who has successfully trained bridle horses and whose horsemanship I admire, but eventually, with my mustang mare. I think that with the horses coming in for training, I'd stick with snaffle and snaffle to curb transitions, as not many people in New England want a bridle horse. But I want to bring my own personal mare there, eventually.
That introduction was fairly off topic, but in reading threads on here, and on the classic californio page on facebook, one idea that came up multiple times was 'Signal and Balance', rather than 'Pressure and Release.'
I'm struggling to understand the 'signal and balance' method. Pressure and Release makes perfect sense, perhaps because that is what I'm used to. So why wouldn't pressure/release methods work in training a bridle horse? And in your opinion, what does 'Signal and Balance' mean? I understand that the spade is a signal bit, and should be used with nearly invisible cues. I guess it is the 'balance' idea that I am not completely understanding. Thoughts?