Yoga teacher training is full of dedicated yogis who may not be serious about becoming a yoga teacher, but they do have a keen interest in yoga. It is a perfect world where we are open to exploration and willing to soak in all aspects of yoga or at least tolerate them.
The reality, however, is different. Teaching a regular yoga class is far different from teaching your fellow yogis or assisting an established teacher who already has a following. There are a few things that no one will teach you at a teacher training.
1 / Practice a radical acceptance
You have to accept your students for who they are. Let's be honest. Students come to yoga for reasons that you, as a yoga teacher, do not find particularly interesting. They may not care about deep breathing or a mind-bod connection. They want to have a hot butt. Welcome them anyway.
2 / Build a rapport before anything else
Students have to like you before they allow you to give them individualized attention, hands-on assists, or any injury insight. They come to classes shielded. They won't volunteer their injury history if they do not know you. They do not want you to touch them if they do not know you. They do not want you to 'correct' them if the do not like you. Teach the class, not the individual, build rapport and trust. Then you can step into their personal zone.
3 / Be likable as a group leader
Your classes are built on your likability, not your knowledge. If you ask your friend why she takes the particular yoga teacher's classes, she will tell you because she likes the teacher, not because the teacher is knowledgeable about yoga. I have known yoga teachers who had the most in-depth knowledge about yoga and barely filled up classes and I have known yoga teachers who just graduated from a basic yoga training and become instantly popular because they were confident, funny and friendly. Yoga trainings do not teach you these qualities.
4 / Students want to get their ass kicked, but not really
The people in front of you are people who feel not good enough, inadequate, intimidated. They were raised to be competitive. They are self-critical and self-judgemental. They want to get their ass kicked by doing a bunch of lunges and sweating. They do not want to face their fears. They do not want to sit down and watch you teaching them an arm balance or inversion. They want to keep moving. They do not want anyone in the class see that they cannot do a pose. You as a yoga teacher need to tackle insecurities first. You can do it with humor or giving them poses that they can do easily.