Well, as a citizen of the (rather cold right now) Netherlands and a practisioner of aikido I must say that indeed a lot of the dojo's have a pleassent way of practice
The dojo where I practise does this also and I must say that I sometimes like that and sometimes not. This does not keep me from practising and teaching the mondayclass there. In this class there is a emphasis on martial spirit and the people who show up do have it in them.
Now to make my point: if you look at the meaning of aikido and the way O Sensei saw it at the end of his life you can see you don't have to be vigorous to be a good aikidoka. It is what the people make of it. Lots of times when practise is harsh there will be competition, something Morihei did not approve off.
On the other hand; he spent a lifetime of hard practise before it became softer and people now try to grasp this softness at once while it took the founder all of his life.
So, who is doing it right? I don't know. Maybe I will after a long time from now, I'll let you know...
Arjan de Vries
Itokan dojo Amersfoort