It was sort of like trying to describe an Elephant to a man that has not concept of an elephant.
So, the only thing I know to do is to do what he said do. Keep getting with guys in the area that are doing it, and then get back with Mike to see if I can see that Elephant a little more clearer in a few months!
Hey Kevin, this reminded me of the discussion we were having over in the sankyo-armbar thread. You made a comment that I decided to just leave alone at the time:
Why does ikkyo work? (actually mine doesn't so well these days!)
I think ikkyo works only because uke is moving to avoid pain, or the potential of pain. This is why it does not work so well on beginners I am finding today. They don't understand the dynamic of ikkyo so they can learn soon to counteract it! However, through in atemi (pain), then it works.
Nikkyo. Nikkyo only really works, I think, if uke is moving appropriately to avoid pain.
Sankyo. If uke does not back out around his center as you drive through it, well then he gets pain.
Yonkyo. Suprisingly I don't really like the whole radial nerve pressure point thing, but concur that it is best to drive the arm back into uke's center. But what keeps uke in position for you to affect his center? Avoidance of pain.
Same with the rest.
You cannot remove the potential for pain. However, as you state, simple reliance on it is not enough. I agree. Primarily the principle is about controlling center.
I'd encourage you to think about our conversation and your above assertions possibly given some of the new stuff you've worked with at the seminar. Did the stuff Mike showed hurt or did it simply move you regardless of your intent to be moved? This is one of the really frustrating things with discussing 'aikido' online. What you described above, I wouldn't consider to be 'aiki'. It's just jujutsu kansetsu waza. Also, I'm not saying that aiki can't cause injury or pain, but the idea that aiki comes from the threat of pain shows a lack of experience with (what I consider to be) real aiki. It's my belief that most (90% or more) of folks studying Aikido in the US, have never actually felt real aiki, just good clean jujutsu. Anyway, I really hope you take my comments as just something to think about now that you might have some new information.