Paramount in human behavior is habit. Habit is the hidden addiction that controls every human. The human learning curve is a downward line as we age.
From the chart, one can see that as the person’s ability enhances (downward line) and he ages (horizontal line), his ability to learn is increasingly diminished. This is because the older a person gets, the more entrenched he is with his habits. The more ability he has the more habits he will develop and therefore the less chance for learning.
These are facts of life. They are not good or bad, yes or no issues. Our job is to decide what to do in view of this fact.
In learning the Chen Style Taijiquan Practical Method we must first keep this in mind. We must reverse our behavior so that we can continue to learn. Of course this should not mean that we “empty our cup” in order to fill it. Knowledge that is gained cannot and should not be eradicated. We must observe our own mode of movement and check to see if we are making progress. Here is what we can do in a classroom learning scenario:
1) Ask the instructor to make corrections.
2) Ask fellow students to check forms.
3) Take photos to check our body alignment.
4) Videotape forms to evaluate again bad habits.
Originally posted on Nov 2007