Good stuff. I hope I can get all this in...
Is it an advantage if one really starts Aikido without prior training in other martial arts?
Good question Boni.
Maybe not but I have to admit I wish more aikidoist knew how to attack with conviction not necessarily punch or kick.
; I honestly find myself wishing that my instructor will say to me: "Just bring it...come at me with whatever you've got." There's a lecture on the hazards of ego in here; give it to me if you must.
JK, I think that's natural not necessarily ego. You have other experiences that are "allowing" you to critically think about these issues.
I am in a good situation whereby I have a good instructor and a Sandan to work with outside of regular class and I can attack them with a little more ferver. I think in my situation we look at it as an opportunity to learn from each other. Maybe you can approach it like that but I wouldn't do it during formal classes.
I also agree with respondents who indicated the value of karate (or past training) was that you are able to pick up things more quickly. In my case I had to accept my past first.
Wendy - I also used Tai Chi (Yang) to transition to soft style (aikido). I plan on going back to Tai Chi (Chen) after the new year as part of my overall training.