Re: Different Styles of Aikido, same smiles?
...damn Submit button....
And remember there is an awful lot of range in each and every style, and they sometimes overlap a bit; what might be considered soft in one style might be middle-of-the-road in another. Add to that how some dojos in the SAME style have harder or softer reputations, and you can see where the broad statements about styles looses clarity.
A new member recently came to our club (NOT the same one I vented about a month or so), who is from Yoshinkan. I had heard the stories, and was a little apprehensive; turns out we give as good as we get (we're Aikikai), and we enjoy training with each other and trading pointers and noticing and trying each other's differences.
It's like a language, this Aikido: we all speak the same one, with different accents (I lived in Atlanta for 4 months, I still miss the accent). Some of us speak the same English or French that came over 400+ years ago (Newfoundland), and some have developed unique accents, but it is at it's root the same thing. A way to talk to each other.
At least that's how I prefer to see it.