How do we balance this tricky dynamic of being instructors and being students while we take classes? One strategy is to let our minds slip in and out of each mindset as it naturally might during any given class. For example, you could be working on responding to an instructor’s verbal or physical cue (working on your own growth as a practitioner). A few minutes later, you could take note of an image from the instructor that you would love to adapt for use in your own classes (working on yourself as an instructor). If you find yourself tending to be in student brain or instructor brain significantly more often than another, you could mindfully work towards trying to bring that into greater balance.
Other instances in which invitatory language should be avoided involve those with safe positioning and alignment in specific asanas. Instructors should never lead students to believe that it’s a good option to place their feet on their knees in Vrkasana (Tree Pose), for instance. All in all, however, invitatory language allows us as instructors to guide students in executing the yoga practices that they come to understand are those that are best for them. Such a process is a beautiful part of life as a yoga practitioner. We can invite, rather than command, as we travel it with them.
All involved directors were interested in my offering my knowledge of the form, resulting in my own class in it at the private studio, and workshops in it at the YMCAs (with the appropriate qualifications to students of my non-certified status, as well as discretion on my part as an instructor, of course). My general knowledge set up prior opportunities and good working relationships with the directors and other teachers, while my more specialized knowledge allowed me to contribute something new and fresh (as well as gain great teaching experience, and frankly much-needed cash flow, for myself).