Re: Ask sensei to demonstrate "at speed"?
I wrote such a message many times before - Aikido is a simplified concept, not some magic. When an Aikidoka fights or performs, it is he who fights, not Aikido. No magical ability changes him\her.
Hence, I do not get the idea of generalizing from one single situation with a single person to the system.
There are so many explenations to the situation you faced, and you immidiatly jumped to the most inclusive one,why? Example for other exlenations?:
- The Shodan saw you are not attacking according to Kata, and was going to start explaining, thus did not respond to your attack.
The Shodan was not at his best that day \ time (happens to all, inlcuding Olimpic level athlets)
- That Shodan may be a poor performer \ has yet to understand how to generalize from Symbolic attacks (the typical Aikido methodology to actual attacks.
- The dojo you are at is less oriented towards S.D. and makes the above generalization more difficult.
- Your Sensei (or at least the his Sensei) is not so good if real applications are in mind
In the context of the Dojo I train at, I do not see any problem in asking Sensei for a solution to a problem, or asking Sensei (or any Sempai) to demonstrate something faster, suggest a solution to a situation etc. The person asking is likely to be invited to feel for himself, if Sensei thinks he will be up to it.
In fact my Sensei still loves sugh chalenges (even at his early 60s), and us Sempai often start converging once we find any "interesting" problem and each of us tries to solve it on his own.
But Reigi (behavioral politness rules) differ between Dojos.