classes     taijiquan     self defence     qigong     tai chi for health     about us     reviews     a-z

What is accuracy?

Accurate means 'to be free from error'. In tai chi, what would you consider an error to be? Failure to copy what the master is doing? Postural faults, misalignment? Holes in your applications?
Lack of groundpath?
Any number of criteria could be considered in terms of accuracy, but you need to ask yourself: what is the most important concern? Surely the first concern must always be your physical wellbeing?


Many students are more interested in learning applications or form movements rather than having awareness. Tai chi is found in the quality of the exercise, not the amount.
If you practice tai chi with awareness, feeling how every step and movement affects your body, you are less likely to injure yourself.

In-built mistakes?

You may be capable of copying your master's form exactly and doing precisely what they do, with no errors. Yet, the form itself may have positions that put a strain on your joints.
If the angle of a step is too far or if you are overstretching - you may be loading the knee or twisting it. A form may be ancient, but is it flawless?


Dr Paul Lam encourages students to explore tai chi carefully and safely. By remaining balanced and moving with constant awareness, there is far less risk of injury.
If you follow the criteria of The Tai Chi Classics, listen to your body and remain in the immediate moment - your practice will be balanced.


Accuracy is a kind of measurement.
If your intent is to be healthy, then you must consider the accuracy of your practice relative to the effect it has upon your body, rather than how the tai chi looks.

Taijiquan contains essential principles, all of which are fundamental and similar in the different styles. When you concentrate on the essential, you speed up your progression, and you improve, no matter what style you do. Don't worry about the minor details.
Focus your practise on these principles.

(Dr Paul Lam)


school database

Page created 2 April 1998
Last updated 29 August 2019