Originally posted by Mike Haber
There is talk from some in the aikikai that Saito created the weapons system that he teaches. Even a couple of people who trained in Iwama(Isoyama and Homma Senseis)have stated that Saito developed his system from the weapons that O-sensei was PLAYING around with in Iwama. There is belief that O-sensei never developed a weapon's system and that Saito Sensei developed his own system from what O-sensei was doing with weapons in Iwama.
Well, M. Ueshiba wasn't much for organization or systemization (that's not necessarily bad, that was just his approach). After the war he spent a lot of time researching weapons on his own at Iwama - I suppose that you could call it "playing around" if you want, but why would you want to do that?
M. Saito has stated on many occasions that he organized and systemized his weapons system based on what he did with M. Ueshiba at Iwama. He was there for a long time, and I, for one, have no reason to believe that what he shows is not a pretty close representation of what M. Ueshiba did with weapons at Iwama after the war.
Does anyone know if Saito Sensei has ever been tested by Koryu people before against his ken or jo to see if what he teaches is truely combative?
Hate to disappoint you, but most koryu people haven't been tested to see if what they teach is truly combative. A lot of that may be because the combative situation that they are training for hasn't existed for, in some cases, 400 years.
That being said, some koryu folks have a low opinion of what he does, some don't. Basically, the point of what he's doing is to improve his Aikido, and it seems to have done that fairly well.