The Difficulties of Teaching

When I began training in the martial arts I was just a child. As I grew older I moved through the various systems I have studied over the years. My interest in the internal arts grew during this time and slowly I began to specialise in the internal arts which led me deeper into meditation and Chinese medicine. Throughout all of these studies I was fuelled by my absolute fascination with the subject. At no point during my training did I ever plan on becoming a teacher. That happened by accident as a couple of friends asked me to teach them Taijiquan. I agreed and hired a hall where the three of us worked through the form and pushing hands. Local people heard about our practice and gradually they stated to come along as well. Though never my aim to teach strangers I am also not very good at saying no! Within the space of a few months the classes had grown to a point where I had to find a larger hall. Things have continued in this way, my teaching have resonated with many people around the world and now the school is fairly large. I spend my time travelling from school to school makings sure things are running smoothly as well as having my own close students. Many of our courses are fully booked within a short space of time and we cannot cater for many people who want to study Nei Gong and the internal arts with us. Whilst this has been a great deal of fun and I love the ‘accidental teacher’ I have begun there needs to be some thought put into how to make the school work effectively for as many people as possible.

The main difficulty I am facing as a teacher is that I cannot get to all of the people who wish to study with us. We are receiving regular e mails form people around the world asking for courses in different areas. The problems in doing this is that I have seen just how well people connect with this system when they start learning it. Realistically, in order to effectively teach somebody the arts within our school, I need to offer them the opportunity to train with us a minimum of four times a year, preferably more. If I were to accept all of the kind offers to teach in different countries then I would be spread too thin. Four visits to so many countries would mean that I was travelling constantly which is something I do not wish to be doing.

At the same time, I DO wish to offer classes in what we do to as many people as possible as I have seen just how powerful these practices are at helping people and just how strong the psychological and physical health benefits can be for those studying with us.

In order to tackle this issue, what I have been focusing upon doing is teaching a few close students how to teach Nei Gong and the internal arts in a very structured format so that it can be taught in the manner described above. They are learning how to focus upon teaching the bodywork and principles required for this system as well as the theory which underpins it all. It is my plan that this small group will soon be able to cover a lot of the groundwork for me meaning that they can travel to the various places requesting lessons with us. This would mean that I could visit these places once a year or so and work on teaching the more complex internal aspects of the system. This would make my time more efficient as at the moment I am having to teach foundation processes which some of my senior students could easily do. This would mean that my time could be much better spent working on the stages of teaching which others are not capable of doing at this time.

As well as this we have a number of qualified teachers of Qi Gong, Nei Gong and Taijiquan around the UK who are starting to run their own classes.

It has been an interesting transition for me to move from ‘class teacher’ to ‘organisation head’. This has greatly changed the nature of my role within the school and it is something which I am slowly getting used to. I am hoping that these changes should ensure that the school continues to teach in the most effective manner possible.

I put this article together mainly for those people requesting me to come and teach in their countries. I always feel bad that I normally have to decline due to my time being so limited. I felt it was important to let you know that steps are being put in place and hopefully this will change in the future as we work on developing a teaching team that can travel elsewhere and develop the internal arts around the world.

The teachers who will soon be assisting me with teaching me will be listed in the teachers directory under the ‘senior teachers’ category. All teachers here will have a lot of teaching experience, have studied with me for a long time and have worked with me to understand how to effectively teach these arts in a systematic modular fashion. You can be sure that those working on this project with me will have spent a large amount of time living and working closely with me to ensure that we offer teachings on these subjects in the most effective manner possible.

Hopefully in this way we will not have to keep turning down teaching requests and the Lotus Nei Gong community can grow worldwide and then we will start to work on toppling world governments one by one…no, wait, that part is supposed to be secret….

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