People rarely realize they what they are drilling and training are not what they appear to be. I was going to write a bit but remembered this video from a few years back.
The one thing I do not go in to in the video is that training drills rarely look like the skills they are cultivating. I saw a discussion of how push hands in Taiji is no good for fighting..
Well sure, standing with a complaint partner and doing choreographed drills is really not push hands first of all. Those drills are meant to give chances to steal one another’s balance and learn to defend against the same. It is not a direct look at combative usage of Taiji, it is training the ability to take away the opponents mind by taking their balance. A person worried about falling is defensive now, they have lost the tide of battle and it should be capitalized on. Once a player steals your balance they should never, ever, give it back.
Combatively, Taiji as I say in the video, has all the ranges and types of combat within it. These are what get used as the opponents balance is stolen, anything that will get the job done.