Chuck here, posting from Emily's account, since I can't seem to turn off the danged cookie and get logged in on this machine as myself ...
I have a few (probably unpopular thoughts on this topic. If the student in question was considering quitting Aikido over 'fear of hurting someone', I think that fear needs more exploration other than 'well, people get hurt' (and I have some unpopular thoughts on that as well, later).
I'm sure there many other reasons for her fear, but the fear of hurting someone on the mat shouldn't be cause for her to quit training.
She is not my student, BTW, and is not even on this continent. She has continued training and is coming to terms with her personal demons.
one of the most pacifistic students
Umm, Colleen, you're a military officer aren't you? Hmm.
around, and have sat out techniques when instructors want us to hit uke after we have them subdued, but I do not worry about
I'm not sure I understand WHY you sat these techniques out ...
But, I can understand your need to adapt your training to your own needs and desires. Here's a bone we'll have to agree not to argue over. I believe if you're on my mat, you'd better try do what I'm teaching,unless you are simply _physically_ unable to do so.
As for the inevitability of training injuries---yes, people may occasionally get hurt, but it is very very rare, or else a dojo is not stressing appropriate ukemi
Unfortunately, it is not rare and it has nothing to do with how much the dojo stresses ukemi. Then, of course, we drift toward semantics and have to define rare and injury ... sigh.
The training in my dojo is vigorous and the system of budo we practice is a bit more robust and varied than most aikido syllabi. However, injuries on my mat are rare ...
I stand by my statement that ANY training involving the human body and the things that are done to it in a martial paradigm (be it aikido, kendo or jujutsu) can cause injury and the caveat is that it requires tori/nage AND uke to take responsibility for what happens.
those things go into training, it should prevent most training mishaps.
Operative word being _should_ ...
I'd take the view that 'if you train with sensitivity and connection, and if you have to, go really slowly, no one should get hurt'.
Then we have to define sensitivity, connection, et al. We're saying the same thing, Colleen, just using different approaches and words.