Ma ai ...how far?
How were you when you did that thing?
Ma ai is the simple explanation for you doing something at that distance. If you ain't within that range, then something has to change it, or you do something else?
If Foghorn Leghorn works, then run like crazy?
You can't always plan for the situation, so that is why we learn to do techniques in a variety of situations, distances, and sometimes some of us, learn grappling and other self-defense arts along with Aikido?
No one martial art can protect you, but what you have in Aikido goes a long way ...
Add to it, if you need other explanations, but it might return later in other Aikido practices? We do continue to learn, don't we?