That's not to say that technique isn't important, or that folks shouldn't study technique, just that it isn't the heart of the matter.
Put another way (I mentioned a similar example somewhere in the interview), I memorized the multiplication tables when I was in elementary school. It's a useful tool, of course, but that's just something to help introduce you to mathematics and help you to deal with mathematical problems more easily. If you saw someone still running over the multiplication tables after thirty years in mathematics (and purporting to be a professor of mathematics) you'd probably say that something was wrong. Or at least, I would.
I don't think that's a very apt metaphor.
Beginning students of musical instruments are introduced to scales when they first start. I have heard that high level payers of musical instruments typically spend a great deal of their practice time working through scales.
I think the point of what we are talking about Ueshiba talking about is that practice of technique is supposed to yield more than good technique. Not that the techniques are a side matter or something you transition from.