Re: Regrading grabs in Aikido...
As for this thread's topic . . .
Regarding wrist-grabs, shoulder grabs and grabs in general:
How do you think grapplers work? Not every grappler (especially the smart ones) is going to shoot for your legs in a real world confrontation? Wrist-grabs and shoulder grabs are also an excellent means of limb control/displacement if you're trying to bridge the distance to get close enough for core body work (through different types of grips, clinching and hooking) -- especially when someone's also trying to hit you back :grin:
Or better yet . . . ask a collegiate wrestler to demonstrate one-on-one or two-on-one wrist control.
Judo players? Give 'em a shoulder grab and any change in the relationship of your shoulders-to-hips will be enough for them to send you on a trip (yes, I know, bad pun).
Granted, plenty of wrist/shoulder grabs I've seen from an aikido perspective treat the grab as the end-all of the attack, rather than a transitional position to manipulate, close or strike (or club or stab, if we're also factoring in the weapons paradigm).
I can see that way of practice from the standpoint of using your connection with uke as the means of subtly developing aiki and refining your form. But, in my opinion, you also (at some point) have to train against attacks of integrity such that any kind of grab can/will be followed by a strike, throw or worse if you stand there doing nothing. It's good training for both uke and nage.