The name of this article could have been “One Year of Tai Chi in Ten Years”. This is something I see with so many people involved in Tai Chi. Sifu Lap Nguyen explained it me: “People study Tai Chi for a year and are satisfied with what they have learned. They then repeat what they learned that first year for the next ten or twenty years.”
Don’t let the “One Year of Tai Chi in Ten Years” thing happen to you. Before I go any further let me tell you about myself. I know there will be trolls out there that will want to ‘Trump” me. You know what I mean; they will try to discredit the message by discrediting the messenger.
Yes I have only been studying Tai Chi seriously for four years and I am at most an above average practitioner. That said, I still have people who have studied for ten, fifteen and twenty years ask me to help them move forward as Tai Chi Practitioners.
*If you are someone who is striving to move forward in Tai Chi this is for you. First, stay away from anyone who tells you cannot study with anyone else, second that you should not go to seminars, and also stay away from those who keep secrets from their students. [Yes I have come across one Sifu who admitted he only taught certain things to family members.]
Fortunately, most Tai Chi Instructors I have come across do not fit this description. Most of the people I have met in Tai Chi have been more than happy to help me move forward.
I’m going to drop names of those people like a dog that has eaten to much chocolate, to make my point:
Sifu Wanda, who leads the Saturday Tai Chi group at White Park in Riverside, helped me to understand the many paths available to me in Tai Chi.
To this day I study how Sifu Harvey Kurland has established a Tai Chi dynasty in the Inland Empire. He and his students probably have more disciples than any other group in Southern California.
Sifu Lap Nguyen of Corona, Sifu Gene Golden of Rancho Santa Margarita, Sifu Paul Olivas of Riverside and Legendary Hawkins Cheung have given me the great insight into using Tai Chi for combat.
Everyone goes to Sifu Jerry Yuan for Push Hands at Temple City.
Robert Goodman (JustRobert) infected me with his love of Tai Chi, and his fellow man.
Sifu Chao Pang of Santa Barbara helped me develop my Chi and keep it flowing while performing my form.
Sifu Michael Krubinar who runs the Santa Monica Push Hands Group has exposed me to everyone and everything worth knowing about in the Southern California world of Tai Chi. You want to be on his list.
Great Grand Master Tony Ho opens my eyes to something new that is possible in Tai Chi every time I see him.
Sigung Richard Clear is the one of the best Martial Arts teacher I have encountered in the 45 years I have been studying Martial Arts.
Everyone I have mentioned is a serious Tai Chi practitioner. They all have a lot more to offer than I have mentioned. Some of them I have studied with formally, others I know from Push Hands Groups or seminars.
Seek these people out. Participate in Push Hands Groups. Go to seminars. Let me know about you seminar and I will publish it. Leave your email address and I will make sure you know about any Tai Chi events.
I hope this article has been informative. If I can help you in your pursuit of Tai Chi resources let me know. Get ten years of Tai Chi Study in the next year!