Quote Originally Posted by Goju - Joe View Post
From this you get a sense of rhythm, movement and flow and a syllabus of techniques.

Ueshiba knew this, and that is why he first started only training people who were a black belt in Judo or something comparable because they would have already had this conditioning.

What this means in terms of aliveness is that Aikido doesn't have to be more than it is, Aikidoka as martial artists should look at being better martial artists - assuming effective techniques and conditioning are what they strive for and cross train.
+1 here. I trained Aikido first and now train judo and BJJ as well. I've found that the concepts behind Aikido help tremendously in the other arts-going with someone's motion, sensing and taking advantage of off balancing. That and the wrist locks hurt like hell when I tap someone-you need to have control and experience to not injure someone. So, yes, Aikido can be trained alive and applied in other contexts. I haven't tried training JUST Aikido in a sparring fashion because frankly I'm concerned that my partner could be injured if not properly escaping techniques. I would love to find a school that does actual randori with Aikido (not just the "multiple attackers" type).
It makes a hell of a lot of sense to train other arts first or in addition to Aikido. I wouldn't use it stand-alone.