Sifu understands that no martial art can remain rigid. One must put skills and techniques to the test, in as real-life a context as possible. Furthermore, if as a result the approach is no longer “tried-and-true,” then one must not be afraid of the need for adaptation and evolution.
But it all must start with understanding and practicing the fundamentals of an art thoroughly — like a young pianist drilling scales and arpeggios, or an aspiring guitarist learning chords — and in this Sifu is an excellent, thoughtful, and patient teacher.
Prior to learning with Sifu, in the past two decades or so I put serious study into various martial arts, starting with MMA, then transitioning into BJJ, and thereafter into Muay Thai and Boxing. To me, it means a lot that Sifu understands that and respects other art forms. Our conversations about finding the connections between different disciplines, the commonalty of certain best practices, etc. have been inspiring.