Re: Why so many Haters of Shin Shin Toitsu Aikido?
I think you raised valid questions. In fact it was a humorous point raised by the ki dojo when an aikikai lady dropped by to train. They were horrified at her iriminage which approached a clothesline instead of the point the fingers through the eye line that they were used to.
Having gone through both schools and many different teaching styles, I think I can safely say that I get it, either way. Both have their own reasons and they are perfectly valid if taken in each context.
The shihonage and other techniques appear to be martially ineffective. I agree with it. But that it is not the purpose of their training nor would that technique be applied in a real situation either.
To put it simply, Sensei K once asked us how many times have we been mugged or needed to use aikido for 'real'. In his 4 or 5 decades of practice, he hasn't need to once. Thus his aikido practice is really useful if it brings him health and joy, i wouldn't discount his skills should he ever need it though, but there you go...different objectives. A bodybuilder and a power lifter may lift weights but they do it with different objectives and thus accomplish different levels of profficiency.
About the shihonage and the kotegaishe and the other stuff... It's pretty much in keeping with the way tohei does it. You don't return the circle to the lower back by way of extending uke's arm over the shoulder,but they use some imagination in creating the circle. Also it's never a pull but a soft touch. You can try and check it out if you ever meet a guy who does this aikido anyway. Just stand firm and try not to fall down. Even though there isn't kuzushi in the beginning, you'd probably fall regardless.
By the way, Is BAF similar to BAB? Sensei K is with the BAB and if I remember correctly, used t be invited to teach in their cross affiliation seminars way back when.
There's a test that he does he didn't show in the vid. I've always been impressed with it. He'll stand on his rear leg and have someone push his outstretched leading hand. You can't push him over. It's a basic ki test, one that tohei has a picture of. I'm pretty sure I pushed him quite hard before and cpuldn't budge him. Yet, that isn't the point of the exercise either. It's more of a way to build up nage's centering ability,
As for the ukemi I can't say it's bad or good. But the point was to walk straight at the end of the round. This is make sure you move from the center not the eyes,