|Lessons with Sifu Waller|
|Written by Rachel|
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Students who have attained a degree of skill with the taijiquan work directly with Sifu Waller rather than Rachel/shido-geiko students. He becomes their instructor.
Training with Sifu Waller assumes a more serious commitment to learning taijiquan the martial art.
What do you need to do?
There are a number of things you must do when moving across to the martial group, so please be prepared:
- increase the standing order payment to £50 a month
- buy Adam Hsu's book The Sword Polisher's Record for your assignment
- buy a practice weapons from CIMAC
- rubber knife
- navel-height foam-covered practice stick (thin bore)
- weapon case
Everything in one night?
If you take a look at our syllabus, you can immediately see that we offer a broad range of taijiquan skills. We cannot realistically teach everything to every grade in one night.
No martial arts class can feasibly do this.
I have seen
schools where some of the students show disrespect to the teacher by not
paying him on time, by being frequently late to class, and by not informing
the teacher when a class must be missed.
If a student wants to plod, take things calmly and proceed at a moderate pace... this is just fine. It is not our responsibility to motivate students. We will not pressure anyone.
If a student is seeking a faster rate of progress, they need:
Frequent exposure to the material
Heavy repetition of basic elements
Practice in class with a variety of partners
A commitment to daily home training
no shortcuts, quick fixes or secret methods to
There is just practice.
The sheer volume of material being offered by martial arts classes requires frequent, detailed tuition and home practice.
In real terms, this means attending more than one lesson per week whenever possible.
Higher-level instruction is often so detailed that it cannot conceivably be taught in a classroom scenario; so smaller groups are required.
Eventually your progress necessitates one-to-one instruction. But for most people, this is a very long way off...
We used to offer an extra class on a
second night but unfortunately there was very limited student interest.
class was discontinued.
People often have good martial ambitions but fail to acknowledge the reality of the trade off.
They want the same skills as a judo student without committing to an equivalent 2-3 times a week training regime. This is somewhat naive.
If you don't do martial arts, it may be hard for you to understand
the importance we place in the people that teach us. They are
not like schoolteachers or lecturers, where the tuition is compulsory. In
the martial arts the teaching and the learning is voluntary. It's a shared
passion. The rewards of your instructor's lessons go deep.
Taijiquan is far more sophisticated than judo. You want the skills? There must be a trade off. Time, money, sacrifice, practice, patience, persistence.
People commonly believe that they can have it all without having to give anything up. To have one thing you must give up something else.
Unless you are attending a second night, students must
recognise that your tuition and
progress is far from ideal.
At present, we do the best that we can under the circumstances.
Home practice & workshops
In lieu of a second class, a student should have a well-established daily training regime at home. Students should also aim to attend every possible workshop and boot camp.
Page created 2 March 1995
Last updated 11 September 2019