Birds of a feather flock together, right? While yoga and pilates seem similar, they have some key differences.

2018 is coming to a close and the new year is right around the corner, which can only mean one thing — New Year’s resolutions! If you are curious about yoga or pilates, 2019 is your year! Make space for their practices and connect with your mind, body, and spirit in ways that are true for you.

Every Body Balance is the place to support your fitness resolutions in the new year. From prenatal yoga and spinning class to pilates and fitness training — movement is found in abundance. If you’re ready to try a yoga or pilates but aren’t sure which one is right for you, explore the differences between the two in today’s post.  

Yoga and Pilates — The Key Distinctions

Curiosity is one of the best guides when it comes to trying new and unique fitness, but it can be difficult to wade and wander through each type and not get lost in the differences. After all, each one of us is an individual and has specific strengths and goals for your body, health, and well-being. Choosing between yoga and pilates may be tough, because honestly, they seem pretty similar. Use the information below as a guide to better help you understand the key distinctions between yoga and pilates, to craft and tailor a workout that is perfect for you — but it never hurts to try both!

Yoga

History

Yoga is an ancient eastern practice that centers around the mental, emotional, and spiritual parts of fitness through a series of breath work, postures, and meditations. Many yoga studios or classes have since made the transitions of whole-yoga practice and focus solely on yoga for fitness. As you move through different yoga flows or postures, the repetition and holding different poses foster strength and flexibility.

Equipment

In yoga, not much equipment is used — its center is on a mat and blankets, straps, and blocks are incorporated for additional comfort.

Spiritual

While many yoga studios steer clear of a spiritual yoga practice, it is a fundamental aspect of yoga. It’s a meditative practice that focuses on the mind to better ease stress and anxiety.

The Approach

Yoga is based on the balance of the mind-body connection which is why it foregoes the use of any machines — to become fully in tune with your body, you have to be fully immersed with just your body. In yoga, you hold poses and are encouraged t be in the moment with your body, and at the end of every class there is a relation time — savasana — where you can let your mind and body just be.

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Pilates

History

Pilates is younger than yoga and originated in the 1920s by Joseph Pilates and was used an early form of physical therapy to strengthen and improve the core, the spine, and develop better overall strength and balance. Over its evolution, it has seen plenty of changes, but its foundation is still in stabilization and strength of the whole body.

Equipment

Pilates implements much more than just a mat — there a variety of machines involved including a reformer, Cadillac, spine corrector, small barrel, wunda chair, and tower. The similarities in all of these machines is they use springs and a pulley system to guide the body through different movements that bring it into alignment and cultivate strength.

Spiritual

Pilates skips the meditative component and was developed for treating injured athletes — it’s more of a traditional fitness routine rather than a practice that centers on breath and poses to combat both emotional and physical issues.   

The Approach

Pilates is different in that it’s not necessarily engaging the meditative aspects. It asks the body to wake up and turn on, by engaging the body to better build a stability and core in the muscles.

Yoga and pilates are quite different from each other, but often get grouped into the same type of workout. If you’re looking for a whole-body workout, yoga is an excellent option. And, if you want to work your stabilizer muscles — the powerhouse muscles — pilates is an amazing way to enhance and engage them.

Both yoga and pilates will help guide you towards your fitness goals in the new year! Try both today — you can when you sign up for our monthly membership option!