Re: Hand Work
David - Thank you for the compliment.
Jun - These are the kinds of things I think should be discussed regulary in classes everywhere. Imagine where you'd be if you started shooting for this at the beginning? I realize that if it's too tough only a rare few would stick with it. That's why I've turned to resources like this web site, as well as, talking to the yudansha after class to try to get some feeling for the more intricate workings of Aikido. The technique will come with practice, but will only be perfected with, as Mike said, the internal aspects of the art. When the connection is right and you feel the "wave-like motions (hi Ellis!) and cyclic motions through the hands and arms that were propagated through the body" does it seem to orginate from your center and just flow and continue to flow even after the connection with uke/nage is gone? I've had a few instances like this and I've been focusing on being able to produce that flow outside of the uke/nage relationship. Being able to "connect" as it were to eveyrthing. A few weeks after I started doing that a lot of things just started clicking in class.
Romuel - that link took me to "Aiki Toolbox - Exploring the Magic of Aikido". Is that the book you had in mind?
Rob - Trying to clarify, you use your arms/legs to postion yourself so you are on line with their center to make a good connection between your center and their center?
Ron - I've read a few things and been involved in some discussions with a few people at my dojo that do kobudo, they all describe to me an almost mystic condition that they sometimes reach that results in powerful strikes/blocks with very minimal movement. I think I'm going to have to add this to my list of things to focus on when practicing.
Those of you that have been or have been trying to include your hips and legs in the techniques, have you noticed an increase in the flow of energy?