Singapore Tai Chi Chuan

Methods

There are methods and there are methods.

I don’t teach two students to do the form the same way. This is because everyone have their own way of learning. So what works for one will not do so for another.

At the basic level I would teach to do a movement a certain way. At another level the same movement would be done differently depending on what the learning focus is. However, I find that once a student learns a movement a certain way he is unable to change to a different way of doing it no matter how many times I explained it. This seems to me like a form of comfort attachment in that once we are comfortable to do things a certain way we are loathe to change it.

However, to make progress we have to give up the old to embrace the new. But this is not just throwing away the old. Its refining and adding on to the old. Like my teacher said if the way you do your form 10 years later is still the same as what you did on the first day then you have not made any progress. The principles are the same but the way we move will change.

In this sense, there is no one way to do a form. There are many ways. So similarly, you can use one form to learn all the principles or you can use different forms to learn different principles. No one way is the best. Its what works for you at that time in your learning. So today, I can do any form in my syllabus and its the same to me. But I couldn’t say the same when I was learning it.

There are methods and there are methods. Use that which works for your learning.

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Author: ZenMindSword

Mushin is a practitioner, researcher and trainer for Yang style Tai Chi Chuan. He is also author of The Ip Man Koans, The Ip Man Questions and TaijiKinesis series of eBooks, as well as co-author of Complete Wing Chun.

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