You asked this a while ago and I never answered. They're rote drills, but meant to give students some conceptual "vocabulary" to work with. What's the right distance I need to be at to kick? Punch? Clinch? What's a closed or open stance? What techniques can I do from there? How can I cover distance quickly if I'm outside of striking radius? How far do I actually need to move back to dodge a technique, and still remain close enough to quickly come back and counterstrike? That's the kind of stuff they're learning by doing the drills, even if they're not always aware of it.