Ok this has really turned into everybody defining boundaries for what they think Aikido is and is not. What’s in the club or not, and under what circumstances, and do they have their passports? Can you say Balkanization. We have so much hair splitting going on I find this thread in dire need of some serious conditioner; Fructis anyone?
In our little corner of the tent we think if you maintain one point, if you put no power at the point of contact, if you remain loose, relaxed and follow the principles, it is aikido no matter if you are engaging in randori, drinking a cup of tea or wrangling a toddler. Aikido is a state of body, mind, and being, not a collection of techniques that may or may not include the forbidden dance.
Yes most basic atemi is utilized to control rather than damage uke, but a knee to face half way through kaiten nage really refreshes my day; why the limitations. As to atemi I always liked this guy and he smiles the whole way through. I bet he serves cake at the end of class.