My understanding is that the formal division of Tohei's blocks of instruction into "aikido" and "ki development" began when he was Aikikai Hombu Chief Instructor.
If I have this right, a number of Hombu Instructors were concerned that the classes he was teaching (particularly at locations outside the Aikikai) fostered a misimpression of what "aikido training" entailed, precisely because of his emphasis on these exercises.
That's my understanding as well. I find it hard to imagine any exercise that had been initially taught by OSensei would be considered by any other of his uchideshi as outside the realm of "Aikido training". Kurita Minouru (uchideshi to Osensei, who left with Tohei after his death, only to leave that and go independant) said/implied (so hard to tell when what's being translated for you is subtle Japanese) that the Ki exercises were from Tohei's own study and quest for understanding about how OSensei actually could do all the things he could. Now I'm not saying that OSensei didn't do these things, or consider them important, but I don't think he was the source for them WRT Tohei or the Ki Society groups. Much like today it seems that serious students were exploring other paths for understanding. I think that's frankly always been the case, regardless of the art.