A video of me and Brian walking through our push test to the chest exercise. While Brian doesn't have 100% full force, he does have a good bit of a push going. We never start from 100% because our structure is not yet built to that capacity. But, we're really psyched because we've never been able to withstand this kind of push to the chest before. And remember, even though the vid doesn't show it, I'm standing in a natural stance, feet side by side, shoulder width apart.
Think about the ramifications of being able to withstand push tests as many aiki contemporaries did (Ueshiba, Kodo, Tohei, etc). No longer do you *have* to get out of the way of incoming energy. That energy, once it contacts you, is appropriately matched in some manner of your choosing by aiki.
(yes, yes, tactically, getting out of the way can be advantageous, but that's a different set of training principles.)
So, instead of needing to move out of the way of the incoming force, then attempt to engage and blend with that force, and then try to redirect that force -- your aiki, within you, is the pathway, the internal roadway system, that allows energy to come and go to various parts of the body. What receives, feeds. Ground the energy. Store it. Dissipate it. Whatever, but the aiki creates the connection and where you go, the other connected body follows.
You are free to be just, well, you. Because the "strength" of that incoming force is taken away. Check out the many vids of those that can do the push tests way better than I can. Just what really is happening to the "strength" of all the men pushing? Aiki. The connection of energies in an appropriate manner such that you take away their "will" or their "drive" to attack. As Ueshiba said about his meeting with Tenryu. He could not push me over because I knew the secret of aiki.