Re: Highest Level Martial Arts and Aikido
Well I agree with both of your excellent points. The numbers were rough estimates from my experience. I agree that when someone is talented they can make decent progress in a short amount of time. I was just trying to explain why some people legitamately take "year and years" before approaching kokyu from a background where they are not actually willing to put in that much effort toward rethinking their most basic movements, having the feelings 'to chase after' (of someone ahead of them on the path who threw them with kokyu and other things), and having their normal strength forms of kihon waza worked out enough to be able to compare and really really feel a difference. And it can all happen in the same class as brand new folks - with a qualified teacher as Ignatius points out.
Note that I am not saying that teaching this kind of way is the _only_ way. Conversely, I seemed to have gotten the implication that anyone who didn't just start out rowing and practicing suburi UNTIL they made some progress in those areas were wasting their time on invalid paths - and I disagreed. I think you can do your rowing and suburi with self reflection daily and have normal aikido class (again with self reflection) with a decent teacher and make all kinds of wonderful progress.