Sure. Shu-ha-ri works well for skills that you are teaching where people progress quickly, like with structuring code a certain way to suit a prescribed architecture.
Shu - don't question what I am teaching, just trust that this might work
Ha - work to master what I've taught you
Ri - now you understand what I've taught you and you've internalized it, now we can talk about "why" we do this, and you can even modify it
I think this works well if the coach and the coachee progress through this cycle in, say, an afternoon. However, in our view, shu-ha-ri is often applied to longer term activities, like enterprise agile transformation.
This is a problem. Transformations must be customized to the situation on the ground. And the experts about that business situation are not usually the coaches, but the people being coached. So some coaches use shu-ha-ri to say "don't question my teachings, just follow it and later we will explain why and you'll be allowed to change things." This saves the coaches the hassle of being questioned, but it does not result in a sustainable solution.
Transformations need to be customized from Day One.
Our alternative comes from the International Institute of Rural Reconstruction (www.iirr.org). They have a credo that is a much more empathetic approach, interested to customize right from the start. This is what we use for enterprise transformation.
Let me know what you think.