Yoga Vs. Pilates – What’s the Difference?

in Apr 17, 2024

People often find it hard to choose what fitness practices are best, and to many, Yoga and Pilates seem very similar. And it’s not necessarily Yoga Vs. Pilates at all, they’re not similar enough to compete! The reality is these practices are very different from their origins onward. Developed as a means to rehabilitate the body after injury, Pilates has been used since the 1920s with a focus on bodily alignment and the core muscles.

Yoga is an ancient practice, designed to help practitioners to reach a higher level of consciousness. Through meditative practice and repetition of poses, the mind and body syncopate to elevate the self. Though, of course, the 21st century yoga practice is a lot different from that of 2000 B.C, the core goals are the same. Yoga is about spiritual and mental health as well as the physical self. The physical self is the tool to reach inner harmony. Pilates is more a form of physiotherapy and strength exercise than a way of life or school of thought. That is not to say you cannot practice both – in fact, they complement each other wonderfully! If you’re looking to tone your body, lose weight, and gain flexibility, Yoga and Pilates are your dream team!

In practice, Pilates and Yoga will look very different. Many yoga classes will just require a mat and an instructor. Pilates uses tools and machines to aid in alignment and maintain balance, e.g. the spine corrector (sounds a bit spooky, doesn’t it? ;)). Mostly these machines are a form of resistance training, whereby the user engages their muscles against counterweights or pulleys.

So here are the biggest differences. What we’d honestly recommend? Both! Using both practices ticks every box the majority of people are looking for in their physical wellness. Toning your body, weight management, strength and clarity of mind. All these things are achievable with one, the other, or both… so go for it!