Time and time again I hear and have been told, "You are giving me the wrong energy" These humble words are usually gifted when Nage cannot perform the technique.
Your thoughts and opinions are greatly appreciated being it in the Dojo or on the Street.
I don't train much so please take this more as me thinking aloud to clarify my own thoughts than anything else...
I tend to dial it back if anyone is having problems. I mean, it depends entirely on the nature of the relationship with the training partner, but if they're having trouble with some part of the movement I generally want them to explore that part by giving them just enough to be able to work on it. So I try to feel what their limit is and then push right up toward it without actually reaching it. They're happy they get to move and I'm happy I get to apply my structure instead of talking about it.
"Wrong energy" is a hard phrase to work with though. I much prefer it when my partner can pinpoint where I'm being overly tense or otherwise describe the detail of my energy that is lacking. If it's hard to pinpoint, it becomes an exploration thing. The premise to training, as I understand it, is that nage makes it work by harmonizing with nature and uke gives enough to work with. Maybe the technique has to change to make it work. For example, I was practicing with a Wing Chun guy and tried to do ikkyo. His elbow was so tightly drawn to his body I couldn't float it, but I could penetrate with my other hand through the forearm. This displayed an opening that my partner adjusted for and suddenly I could do ikkyo, even if it wasn't pretty. Sorting though what we have presented to us is why I like this stuff so much. Wrong energy? Maybe so. Let's explore that. Sometimes my partner and I might just have to agree to disagree.
Of course on "the street," function is king, so I probably wouldn't worry about it so much. Theoretically, I'm just harmonizing with nature and my attacker is forced to harmonize with it through me.