Perhaps the following quote from Saito Morihiro sensei is relevant:
Aikido is generally believed to represent circular movments. Contrary to such belief,
however, Aikido, in its true Ki form, is a fierce art piercing straight through the
center of opposition. The nature of the art being such that you are not supposed to
adapt yourself to your partner by making a wide oblique turn of your body but are
called upon to find your way onward while twisting your hips."
Traditional Aikido Vol. 5