I have read all of your concerns, and can tell from the questions, many of which I too have had in the past, that you are young in the Aikido World. After Studying many arts and holding a 6th Dan in two different Korean and Phillipino systems, Aikido is my first and foremost love. Without the basic teachings and techniques against kicks engrained into me by my teachers, I would not have instinctively felt how to overcome an adversary on many ocassions. I am now returning to the peaceful world of Aikido after many years of competition and kicking, and can say to you this. You will have instincts, not learned kata when you study Aikido. You will know what to do if the time comes, not think which technique should I use! It will be in your soul, not in your mind. The road is memorable, do not cloud it with impatience. Learn all you can, and the simple question about kicks in Aikido will be answered. I'll guarantee it. If I had it to do all over, I would have never left.