Originally Posted by NoSanninWa
Uruhara told Ichigo way back when he started to train him that he had been using Rukia's shinigami powers until that point. Since those were removed, he'd have to bring out his own shinigami powers. If Ichigo's powers were Zangetsu, then it makes sense that Rukia's powers were Sode no Shirayuki.
Ok, if you follow that string, that means that Sode no Shirayuki really inhabited Ichigo's inner world, together with Zangetsu (of whom Ichigo was not aware at this point). Interesting.
Which also could be taken as prove that Zanpaktuo power and ability can be inherited.