I gotta chime in, Ellis makes intriguing comments about Aikido. Is Aikido a solid combative. He says someone training 6 mos in BJJ can take a Aikido with decades of training.
I think this is true. But a bit unfair. Here is why. I see the reason for this is because you don't have the likes of a Randy Couture taking up Aikido (I use Couture since he recently fought, but lost, at 46 freaking years old. You gotta give the man his props.) People like him don't gravitate to Aikido. We can say the same for all the up coming and established MMA fighters, that is why they are in MMA and not Aikido. These MMA guys are a breed unto themselves who look for contact sport fighting skills. They don't care about all the other things involved the make up Aikido. It doesn't fit them well, they want the "power" to win a fight. Not the power that Aikido offers in the way it offers it.
If you look though all the pictures posted here of Aikidoka's you would be hard pressed to find some like Couture, who lives to fight, in a gi. You're more likely to see most of the people in a gi not being your model MMA fighter.
What I am trying to say is, Aikido doesn't attract those who are attached to MMA filling Aikido's ranks, like the Randy Coutures. Those who join I think generally join Aikido because it offers other things- outside Japan. I have no idea if this applies in Japan. People who want to make a living fighting or who love to fight go into professional contact sports like, MMA, boxing, football, hockey, and what not, and not Aikido.
We tell people who want to learn to fight that come to our class and say you should try MMA. We tell them that Aikido is complex and after 20 years of practice you might be good at it. The class will not teach you to fight offensively, and is a defensive/offensive art. The word art is heavily stressed. No martial art makes you a superman, will not make you untouchable, or give you super human magical power and strength to defeat you foes. If the person wants to fight we suggest a better fit and that being the MMA, Boxing, Tai Kickboxing, or learn fighting the original way saving thousands of dollars and years of your life training in martial arts. Just go out there in and get in fights. You will learn quick if you have what it takes to be a fighter or not.
Ellis has his reasons for seeking the power he has in mind. We all have the right to seek such things in life. Which brings me to this, the more I read of him the more I start to see maybe Aikido wasn't a good fit for him and MMA came a bit too late. I mean he on a quest to fight what he defines as power. It may be in the CMA, but clearly his personal archetype for power isn' t Aikido. I hope he finds it the art that offers his personal archetype of power. Or maybe not because he has traveled a very interesting martial arts journey he is willing to share with us.