Nathan Richmond wrote:
I realize that Aikido is basically reacting to what someone else would attempt to do to you. Such as grabbing, pushing, punching, kicking, etc. I am right about this right?
So my question is: Can Aikido techniques be applied in situations that you must make the first move?
First paragraph: I don't think so. I think it's easier at the start if it's approached this way.
Second part, yes it can. It's just a little tricky to start off with this. In a randori (about which I have little practical experience) he who waits for an attack is going to be in trouble pretty quickly. He must make the first move, draw an attack and hence find an opening to do a technique.
Aikido technique requires openings that we give freely to each other in training by attacking in a committed manner. Eventually we learn to create these openings by drawing the desired attack. If you're an eccentric and wildly gifted old man who created Aikido, you eventually get to the point where you insist that the attacker doesn't actually exist.