Singapore Tai Chi Chuan

Of Contradictions

It sounded like contradicting advice to my student. Things I told him not to do previously now I am asking him to do it.

Funny isn’t it. First I said its wrong don’t do it but now I’m saying to do it. But it’s not contradictory.

There are things that a beginning student should not do and yet the same things can be practiced by a higher level practitioner. This is because to do the more advanced stuff a student needs to master certain basics. Without these basics to attempt more advanced material is folly and leaves one with more bad habits than desired.

For example a beginner can’t do concurrent neutralizing and issuance of an opponent’s power within the same movement for example Push with minimal outward motions. To teach him to do so would be asking a lot.

But once the 5-Count is mastered this skill becomes a by-product of this training. After a series of hands-on transmission the student should be able to acquire this skill.

However, this is only the beginning. This skill can still be refined further through the learning of certain principles. Thus, such learning by necessity needs to be transmitted on 1-to-1 basis due to the depth of information, explanation, feeling and corrections required.


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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