Originally posted by Jim23
And why aren't pushups or situps, etc. done? They just increase strength, general health, etc., it doesn't matter if strength isn't used in aikido.
I think the kind of conditioning that actually matters to your aikido is obtained a different way. Rolls exercise your stomach muscles (try doing 300 in ten minutes- not that I'd be able to go so far myself, but I know people who do), Suwari waza strengthens the hips (probably the most important muscles in my opinion), extensive weapons practice might strengthen the shoulders.
Sadly, we rarely train that hard. However if you want to improve your physical fitness, there _are_ aikido exercises that you can do for this, which are also more useful to your aikido than say pushups. Also, a lot of aikido training just isn't convenient outside of the dojo setting (rolling, varios paired exercises).
I know a guy who makes his students do 1000 rolls for their nidan grading. (I train with him once a year). Obviously his students have to be in excellent physical condition, but they do it without the pushups etc. which you can do on your own time. I guess if you're not able to get intense training locally, you should do them by yourself. Or 400 bokken cuts every day.