Based on several different versions of the traditional Yang Style Tai chi Long Form, the 26-section foundation routine is at the core of our teaching method. It was developed in order to overcome many of the problems inherent in both the traditional routines as well as those found with the modern simplified routines.
The 26-Section Foundation Routine:
- is comprehensive and detailed. It does not depend on watering down the choreography or eliminating traditional elements just to make it easier to teach.
- is balanced and symmetrical, which provides a more complete and balanced workout that the one-sided traditional routines.
- is easy to follow. It is forward-facing and symmetrical, which means that the student are not turning the back to the teacher or straining to look over their shoulders. This makes it much easier to teach with, especially in a group setting.
- is relatively compact. The routine is meant to be practised anywhere, and can be easily modified to fit into a small floor space.
- is progressive. Like the traditional routines, the 26-section routine begins with simple and thematic movements, and progresses gradually to more complex choreography and more challenging physical movements.
- incorporates the fundamentals. While traditional training often requires basics to be practised separately, and whereas this is still beneficial, the 26-section routine incorporates basics into the routine.
- allows for a phased curriculum. Each section of the routine can be taught and practised separately, as an exercise in itself, emphasizing specific core principles. This means that it can be offered as an ongoing course with students joining at different times.
- can be compartmentalized. Any number of sections can be taught as a course. The progressive nature of the routine means that it can be broken up into any number of sections with varying levels of difficulty. This can allow for beginner, intermediate, and advanced classes to learn different parts of the routine over shorter periods of time than would be required to teach the entire routine.