Tai Chi Master

The term 'Master' in the martial arts usually refers to a practitioner who has dedicated at least 25 years of hard training to their chosen art, amassed tens of thousands of hours practice and is very good at their stuff.
There is no real consensus as to what constitutes a 'Tai Chi Master'.
Peter Southwood suggested the following guidelines: 40 years martial arts experience, 20 years teaching experience, 30,000 hours of tai chi practice, stage 5 skill with all forms and be capable of teaching other Instructors.

Mastering tai chi requires the following:

• A lifelong commitment to the furtherance of the art
• Spontaneous demonstration of every and any aspect of the art
• The ability to train other people to become Tai Chi Instructors
• An embodiment of the principles outlined in the Tai Chi Classics
• Highly accurate rendition of every exercise/form/drill/application
• Extensive knowledge of every facet of every subject in the syllabus i.e. 'jing'
• An in-depth understanding of every facet of the exercise/form/drill/application
• How the exercise/form/drill/application links to other aspects of the curriculum
• The ability to dismantle and explain how and why the different components operate
• Grace, ease, subtlety, sensitivity, nimbleness, appropriateness, simplicity are all a given
• The willingness to train disciples to acquire every aspect of the teaching and perpetuate the art themselves
• Unselfconscious, skilled and utterly effective application of the art in combat employing chin na, jing and shuai jiao
• The ability to develop, improve and deliver a thorough, fully differentiated syllabus suitable for all ability levels and all ages
• The ability to dismantle and explain how and why every form posture operates and how it can be applied in at least 7 different ways
• Comprehensive theoretical knowledge and the ability to discuss and explain how taoism, martial theory and actual practice all tie together
• The ability to apply the tai chi principles (yielding, stickiness, peng, jing, composure, connection, 4 ounces etc) in every situation with absolute ease and certainty

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