OTOH practising with a mindset where the both tori and uke always keep focus on the possibility of a follow up and where uke dont break the mental connection by rolling away seems like a good idea in my view.
Peter Rehse wrote:
Exactly - not to mention that trying to guess what you opponent is going to do is antithema to budo - mushin and all that.
I call BS on both these answers. I've heard variations on the first one lots of times and I just don't buy it. In most Aikido training, we are doing training exercises that have specific rules and parameters. Having an awareness of your partner between throws and being in a constant state of expecting crazy anomolous things are not the same thing. Saying that you should always do every exercise with the awareness that your partner might suddenly do something outside those parameters is absurd. Why stop at constant vigilance that nage might pounce on you after every throw? What if they grab hold of your testicles and try to tear them off as you go down? What if they quickly whip out a knife from their gi and try to slice open you abdomen as they throw? What if they secretly conspired with another dojo member to break from training with their partner, run over and attack you while you are falling? What if they contracted a hit man to break through the front door with an assault rifle? Are you keeping all this in mind every time you practice an ikkyo? It's ridiculous.
As for the second dismissive comment, of course you do some cognitive extrapolation on what you think your opponent is going to be doing next. You size up the situation, look for signs that indicate their mindset, where they seem to be moving, take into account how they behaved earlier in the exchange and in prior exchanges... and most important to this topic, keep in mind what the specific exercise is that you are performing and what its rules and parameters are. This is all basic tactical thinking. Mushin is not about becoming stupid. If you cleared your mind of all thought whatsoever every time you started a repetition, you'd still be busy wondering where you were and why everyone around you was wearing silly trousers as you got punched.