Difference Between Yoga And Pilates


What is Yoga?

The word “Yoga” essentially means, “that which brings you to reality”. Literally, it means “union.” Union means it brings you to the ultimate reality, where individual manifestations of life are surface bubbles in the process of creation.

Yoga is an ancient form of exercise that focuses on strength, flexibility and breathing to boost physical and mental wellbeing. The main components of yoga are postures (a series of movements designed to increase strength and flexibility), meditation, and breathing techniques to promote mental and physical well-being.

The practice originated in India about 5,000 years ago and has been adapted in other countries in a variety of ways. Yoga is now commonplace in leisure centres, health clubs, schools, hospitals and surgeries.

While there’s scope for more rigorous studies on its health benefits, most studies suggest yoga is a safe and effective way to increase physical activity – especially strength, flexibility and balance. There’s some evidence that regular yoga practice may be beneficial for people with high blood pressure, heart disease, aches and pains – including lower back pain – depression and stress.

Also Read: Difference Between Sit-ups And Crunches

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a form of low-impact exercise that aims to strengthen muscles while improving postural alignment and flexibility. A typical Pilates workout tends to be 45 minutes to an hour long.

Pilates exercises are done on a mat or using special equipment, such as the Reformer, Cadillac and Wunda Chair. With its system of pulleys and springs, handles and straps, the apparatus can provide either resistance or support, depending on your needs.

Pilates was developed by German-born Joseph Pilates, who believed mental and physical health were closely connected. His method was influenced by Western forms of exercise, including gymnastics, boxing and Greco-Roman wrestling. 

There are many reports on the health benefits of pilates. However, few of these have been subjected to rigorous scientific examination, and there’s a need for more research in this area. Practitioners say regular pilates can improve posture, muscle tone, balance and joint mobility, as well as relieve stress and tension.

Yoga Vs Pilates

Description Yoga is a therapeutic exercise that attempts to establish the physical, mental and spiritual harmony of human beings. Pilates is an exercise using special equipment designed to improve physical strength, flexibility and posture.
Purpose Yoga can be used for improving the flexibility of the body and it will also gradually increase the flexibility of your joints. Pilates focuses on trying to relax muscles which are tense and provide strengthening of the numerous muscles of the body.
Nature Yoga is an exercise regime with a spiritual element. Pilate is an exercise regime without spiritual elements.
Equipment Does not require any special equipment. Use different exercise machines like reformer, wunda chair, spine corrector, small barrel etc.
Weight Loss Not very effective in weight loss. It very much effective in weight loss.
Focus Yoga brings the focus inward for the individual. Pilates brings the focus outward to the physical body.
Sequence Yoga sequence often include holding poses for multiple breath cycles. Pilates keeps the individual moving except during cool-down stretching.
Breathwork The breathwork in yoga is used for relaxation. The breathwork in pilates is used to energize the muscles.