Tim Jester wrote:
The old saying goes "you fight like you train". If you never train in "Dirty" techniques, eye poking, testes grabbing etc. the odds of you pulling it off in a crisis is very slim. In my opinion, if you don't cross train and you find yourself in an unfamiliar situation, you will lose.
I agree with the essence of your post. I don't think it's necessary to train in every variety of budo in order to "fill the holes" in one's training. I think it can be very usefull though.
For me budo all comes down to two basic things to study: mind and body. I train to be aware of my whole body and mind as well as that of those around me. This requires me to think of situations such as eye-gouges, or whatever you can think of really. I have trained in other martial arts and found the schools at which I trained somewhat lacking compared to my own Aikidojo. This of course doesn't mean those arts were lacking, simply that either I missed something or those particular schools were lacking...per my limited perception of course. So in other words, if someone feels they need to cross-train they absolutely should. As it is now I feel I've found a pretty comprehensive approach, but of course that could change...I've been training for less than 8 years, a blink of an eye, really.
That said, I would argue it is not so much about what art you train in as much as how well you train which is heavily based on how well your teachers train(ed). I'll get a bit philosophical here and argue there are no styles of budo, only styles of teaching it, and from this comes the many many names we see in martial arts today.