Tai chi routines are not intended to merely teach you specific martial techniques, but to deconstruct the elements of engagement.
What does this mean?
Martial techniques, like strikes, throws, kicks, joint manipulation, and grappling, depend on more than strength, speed, and conditioning. They are built on an awareness and understanding vectors, levers, structure, force, power, momentum, and kinetic energy.
Martial skill is about sensitivity, timing, distance, ego, and reference frames. It is about of space, time, matter, energy, and the mind.
The form deconstructs skill and technique, building an intuitive understanding of the pieces so that you can assemble them instantaneously as they are needed.
This is intended to give you a subtle and profound control of structure, power, and momentum, enabling you to respond creatively and spontaneously in a way that the opponent cannot follow or predict.
This is very different from teaching a technique and then looking for an opportunity to apply it. Instead you see the situation for what it is and assemble the pieces to form the strategy and tactics that are appropriate for the moment.
The routines are supposed to liberate you from form, not imprison you within one.
My goal, as a teacher, is for you to develop your own expressions of a martial ART, not to force you to conform to a martial “STYLE.”