Here’s a story of how as a martial arts teacher, you invariably make a specific mistake. Rewind to last week…
I hadn’t been able to make it to my teacher’s Tai Chi Chuan class for a while. Work always got in the way, along with a bunch of other stuff. So it had been a while since we last saw each other. I was looking forward to it as my teacher is a pretty cool guy and his classes are always fun.
First thing he has me do is some form work to help out a beginning student: I stand in front of the student, facing a mirror and do the form. This way, he only has to either watch me directly or look in the mirror and he can copy my movements. We went over the form a couple times and then moved on to some self defense applications, after which we took a short break.
During that break, my teacher walks up to me and says there are “a few little differences” in my form (Translation: he’s too kind to say it but I’m messing things up.) He shows me some examples of how I accentuate specific things in my form and then contrasts them with how I should be doing them. After which he explains it’s typical for when you teach the form to beginners too much.
I’m about ready to slap my head, walk over to the wall and bang my skull against it while repeatedly yelling “Doh!”
Here’s the thing: I know this. It’s a typical mistake every martial arts teacher makes sooner or later: [Read more…]