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Both Yoga and Pilates look similar to a newbie or a layman. In fact they are but only up to a certain degree; there are some major differences between the two. Before we look at the differences, let’s understand the similarity between the two, the basic ones being that both Yoga and Pilates aim to provide the similar benefits to the human body which are strength, flexibility and endurance and unification of mind, body and soul for a healthy, holistic living. Yoga is about exercising, breathing and meditation for a healthy body and mind. Whereas Pilates is more about challenging your body to strength the abdominal muscles control.
Difference between Yoga and Pilates
The major difference between Yoga and Pilates is philosophical. Yoga is an ancient Indian tradition whereas Pilates is a western work-out regime. Yoga has a massive spiritual angle and significance whereas Pilates has little or none. Pilates is more organized of the two whereas Yoga is more wholesome. Pilates was developed by Joseph H. Pilates who himself was a Yoga student. So you can safely assume that Pilates incorporates many benefits that Yoga offers too. Yoga doesn’t have any founder as such, it creation can be credited to many Gurus and sages. Yoga can be a spiritual and meditative practise wherein movement on energy throughout the body is emphasized on. Pilates on the other hands even involves usage and assistance on external props that makes the workout challenging and assisted.
Yoga vs. Pilates
Both Yoga and Pilates have their advantages and disadvantages over each other. None is actually superior or better than the other, it’s just than an individual has to choose as per his or her needs, inclinations and what’s best from him or her. Also nowadays there are various types of Yoga and Pilates that are practised and taught. Pilates’ workouts are more intense than Yoga sessions, with Yoga you will find something that suits every person and style from gentle postures and poses to real challenging ones. Whereas Pilates is more structured like a workout routine. Yoga is flexible and really in-depth whereas Pilates is more on the lines of physical training. Pilates major focus areas are muscle toning, strength and flexibility whereas Yoga’s primary focus areas are balance, strength, endurance and spirituality.
How to Choose between Yoga and Pilates?
To choose between the two and to determine what is best for you, one must probably try a couple of classes of both Yoga and Pilates and then decide accordingly. Yoga puts a special emphasis on breathing and breathing exercises such as pranayama. If spirituality or meditation is something you enjoy or want to incorporate in your fitness regime Yoga is for you. On the other hand if your fitness regime is all about exercising your body you may opt for Pilates. Experts believe the desired final goal of an individual can also help determine which of the two one should choose. So which of the two should you choose? Why choose, in fact many fitness gurus recommend a mixture of Yoga and Pilates as they complement each other very well.