.Why do you say that? This seems counter to what you and everyone was saying to me in other threads
What I mean is that aikido on its own is not always self-defense oriented. Many schools I've seen don't practice atemi, but even if all the training is well done and ideal, aikido is an art that that teaches you to go against the natural instinct to push back. Its a normal respons when someone grabs you and shoves you to resist it. Aikido teaches you to not to resist and go with it. Aikido requires that you train long enough and diligently enough to make such movements second nature.
Because of the dedication it takes to train in aikido, i wouldn't recomend it to someone only looking for self-defense. I would recomend it to anyone willing to take the time to study martial arts. If i didn't think it was effective, it wouldn't make up such an intregal part of my school's system.
Its not that it can't be used alone, I just think it is extremely difficult.
Is this not true of most styles? It's all about muscle memory and drilling things so you don't have to think about it while sparring or in combat. How is Aikido different from any other in that regard?
I think muscle memory is very important, but as a person becomes more skilled I think initiative takes place of reaction. I agree that you shouldn't have to think about the details of a technique, but i think people can take that too far sometimes and take their brain completely out of the equation.