As I mentioned on another thread I am very new to Aikido (2 weeks of lessons) but I am enjoying it greatly. Most of the practices are with the people from our university. So far there have been three different instructors..one for each of the days that we practice, and we have also been encouraged to go to the local ASU dojo if we would like extra practice. I went (with much trepidation) last night and found it to be an excellent experience (I like the traditional mats MUCH better than the mats they use in the padded gym) and everyone to be extremely welcoming. Each of the instructors that I have practiced under so far has a different aikido style and also a different teaching style. All of them welcome comments and questions and are very courteous. I was very much warmed by my reception at the dojo and plan to go back there at least once a week if possible...
On the issue of whether or not different styles "mess up" your Aikido, I am not really qualified to comment but I will relate my experience from yesterday at the dojo. One of my partners..one of the advanced students...was guiding me through the form that we were doing..(I cant remember the japanese name for it
)and suddenly I was going down over his knee. I remember getting up..rather shaken..and thinking "we didnt do THAT in the other classes!"..and then realizing that it was just an addition to the form and was more of a personal little fillip than a major change. I dont think that practicing with the gentleman in question messed me up...but I guess we'll see when I go to my regular practice tomorrow. :P
"Are you *sure* thats safe?"