Charles Cunningham wrote:
As to the question of whether it is easier to hit someone or do nikyo, I am unpersuaded by David's argument. Rare is the nikyo that does not present multiple atemi (striking) opportunities along the way. On the other hand, I readily grant David's point that both striking arts and aikido become substantially more difficult to use under combat conditions.
Going a little off topic here - but so as to keep things clear...
My point of consideration is two-fold: 1) that pertaining to actual hand-to-hand combative experiences (not training); and 2) that of having a strike do its intended level of damage (not just touching the target). Both of these perspectives pertain to one's mind being unfettered while in the midst of violence, and to the development of a practical power. The development of these attributes is long and arduous. There is no quick or easy way of bringing these skills to a practical level - other than making sure your opponent is without skill and/or of an inferior athleticism or aggressive intent. This remains true whether one is trying to do nikyo or a rear cross - because one is still going to have to seek to develop these attributes and that is the hard part of either tactic when it comes to a hand-to-hand combative experience.
In short, as many people as there are in Aikido that couldn't do Nikyo to save their lives, there are that many folks in the striking arts that couldn't strike to save their lives. If there is a difference, I would suggest that Aikido's emphasis on two man forms makes it less likely to delude oneself (vs. hitting bags and/or doing solo and/or no contact focus strikes). However, as I said, two man forms have their own way of allowing for a delusion of skill (e.g. fake ukemi). So, I imagine things are even on that account as well.