Dave Whiteland wrote:
when picking uke out from the keen and willing participants, none of the first four instructors, including the woman, chose a single female uke.
Is the bias in not picking female ukes based on the common perception that throwing a large man around looks more impressive at a demo? I recently had a conversation with a friend who often invites overseas instructors to teach seminars at his dojo. He told me that when these instructors first come here, they have to prove that their Aikido works, so they tend to demonstrate accordingly. Once they have proven that their Aikido works, they will pick anybody for uke, rather than only the large or strong men.
Unfortunately, human nature being what it is, instructors are having to prove themselves first before they can get through to students that they have something to teach. I think this is where the bias comes from - the student's perception rather than the instructor's preference.