Osmosis – the process of gradual or unconscious assimilation of ideas, knowledge, etc.
My teacher said something that can be paraphrased as when the principles are correct, everything will fall into place.
After years of drilling forms and getting the details as close as possible I find that my student can now pick up techniques much more easily. There are still places to improve but at long last the chips are falling into place.
One of the things we worked on for a long time in push hands is the guard. What is our guard? Why do we do it the way we do it? What advantages can we get out of it?
Once his guard is better its use is not only for push hands but for application of combat techniques. An immediate use is how the guard can morph into a defend-n-enter technique against a straight punch. The same defending move is used as an unbalance-n-attack technique. An example from TaijiKinesis Vol 2 – Learning the Taijiquan Form is shown below.
The same guard can be used to defend a cross. A change in angling can give rise to a defence against body hooks. An uppercut can also be dealt with in a similar fashion.
We then looked at how to defuse attempts to bridge our guard; something that would be useful against Chinese southern styles that like to make forearm contact. Since we were down this road I took the opportunity to add on to the topic of conditioning that I had touched on previously.
To make the learning more complete I drew a link between the pole that he is learning and how the footwork can be used in sparring to implement different strategies. There are other aspects that I wanted him to consider also for a more rounded understanding of the use of Tai Chi in combat.
The process to Master Tai Chi Today involves knowing what we are doing. The learning begins the day we first learn the form which is a mean to learn about how to control ourselves. The learning is then fleshed out in push hands and further along examined in other context.
Want to learn Tai Chi in Singapore? At Singapore Yang Style Combat Tai Chi lessons covering forms, weaponry, push hands, fajing and applications are offered. Lessons are conducted in English. Send enquiry today at the link here.