Oh ehh. I trained Roman with his nose cranked to his chest, yes we depended on draw reins at first because i thought they where a wonderful invention that fixed everything. I tell you this all the time Harleekins that headset first, because without the headset it don't matter how slow your going. Headset is everything, atleast where we show idk about anywhere else. But speed comes with time. Like Roman flys now, he doesn't lope because i took him away fromt he showring for winter, but i will fix it when summer comes around butblahblahblah im getting off subject. I don't think alot of bending will help, i personally HATE bending my horses alot, i do it some because i know its good for them but look at Leon, how his head will be turned to the rail and he can still go in a straight line. Cory has trouble steering him because Mike did too much bending. Im not dissing bending, its all good and fun, its just too much is too much, plus it takes forever. Keep tying her head down, only tie it down tighter, you should see how tight i have Roman, his nose is practially touching his chest, but he evens out after a few laps. Keep doing what your doing.
Where to even start...There are so many things wrong in this paragraph. I am awful at trying to type out what I know, but will try to give it a shot. The reason the horse you mention can be turned to the rail but still go in a straight line is that he was not flexed correctly. They have to be taught the the body follows the head and neck. Sure, I have a horse that does that sometimes, he is only 4 and has not learned how to keep his body together yet, he will learn in time, but has also not learned how to flex throughout his whole frame. If the horse is not schooled in leg yields and flexing on a circle then he may do this.
Tying the head down like you are suggesting is only going to create a resentful horse, one that may take one of many different ways of expressing it's displeasure. Some may take to bucking, some may suffer in silence, but become hard mouthed.
Headset is not first and is not the most important thing. Headset comes with time and correct training. It is not front to back, but really back to front. THey must be working correctly from behind in order to truly frame up, anything else is a false frame, with the horse on the forehand. Perhaps at local shows you are not counted off for working on the forehand, but anything more than schooling shows I can guarantee you will be (or should be).
LauraB, LoveMyFinny, and GottaRide please help me on this one! I am afraid I am not explaining well enough.