We all have at one time read/hard the quote from O'Sensei: "Aikido is 90% atemi..." or some other variant/percentage thereof.
Question: what role do you think atemi waza plays in "modern" Aikido? Does it have a place, should it have a place, etc. If so, what sort of atemi waza would best fit modern Aikido?
I'm not trying to "stir the pot" or provoke responses via a rhetorical question...I'm genuinely curious as to others' opinions & experiences.
On a personal note: currently I am taking an 8-week "crash course" in Kajukenbo, specifically the Chu'an Fa variant, which heavily emphasizes strikes. It has given me much reflection lately.
At this point, I suppose I should clarify what I mean a bit further. Some instructors emphasize it as essential and thus incorporate it fluidly into technical instruction. Others occasionally teach it and/or treat it as clearly of secondary importance. Some even disregard it entirely...all of this sometimes within the same dojo in regards to assistant instructors (I've personally seen it happen). Each instructor has their own approach, "interpretation" of Aikido and these differences of opinion/experience are to be respected...nobody "owns" Aikido.
That being said, can there be Aikido without atemi waza? That is, there are some instructors who do teach an "atemi-less" Aikido.