If you’re thinking of some mindful forms of exercise, then you might have yoga or Pilates in mind. These exercises are often categorized as one, and you have most probably heard one or the other at some point in time. While they may seem to be like similar practices, they also have major differences. With that, let’s take a quick look at Pilates vs. yoga.
Where It All Began
To compare Pilates vs. yoga, we take a look at where each of the practices began.
Yoga dates back to around 5000 years ago, starting as a form of meditation for the body and the mind and evolving over centuries to more than dozens of form – several of which we use for exercise.
Pilates, on the other hand was developed more recently. Developed by Joseph Pilates back in the mid-20th century, it was created as a form of rehabilitation and conditioning.
Pilates vs. yoga differ in workouts, too. Although the goal is strength and flexibility, Pilates gives you a tough total body workout as the exercise sees the body as a whole. Most exercises are focused on the core and the spine. Pilates classes range from beginner to advanced – with beginner classes offering low impact movements for those who are new to the form of exercise.
Yoga, on the other hand consists of very different exercises. Some forms of yoga classes also focus on strength and core balance, but that is not the only focus. There are other core components included in your yoga workout – one of which is breathing. Instead of focusing on just the body, yoga also focuses on the mind and the spirit. Hatha yoga is a milder form of yoga recommended for beginners. Once you want something more strenuous, you can try more advanced styles such as Power yoga.
Cardio Benefits and Weight Loss
When it comes to aerobics, mild forms of yoga and Pilates offer very mild aerobic benefits. If you want to ramp up your heart rate, then power yoga classes and advanced Pilates classes is the solution. Likewise, if you plan to lose weight doing power yoga or advanced yoga and Pilates classes would be better solutions, helping you burn as much as 250 to 300 calories during a 50 minute schedule.
When it comes to results, comparing Pilates vs. yoga gives you different answers. A study done recently showed that after doing yoga three times a week for eight weeks, participants became more flexible than before they started. Likewise, yoga is also restorative – both mentally and emotionally, balancing the systems of the body after each workout.
Pilates, on the other hand targets the abdominal muscles more, reaching those hard to get oblique muscles. Aside from this, it also helps manage arthritic pain and promotes muscle healing and strengthening. It has also been found to enhance circulatory and respiratory function.
Which is a Better Option?
So, between Pilates vs. yoga, which is a better option?
There is no real correct answer, because as they always say – to each his own. Yoga focuses on mind, body and spirit – helping bring back overall balance. Pilates, on the other hand focuses more on conditioning. If you’re not so sure which one you like, you can always attend both Pilates and Yoga classes. That way, you can easily compare between Pilates vs Yoga and find out what works better for you.