We receive many calls from people asking for Yoga classes at the studio, and everyone is always very surprised when we say that Pilates and yoga aren’t actually the same thing!!
Those two disciplines tend to be mixed up quite often even by people who regularly exercise. The truth is that they really don’t have much in common!!
They both focus on breathing, but in totally opposite ways: yoga focuses on belly breathing in order to relax the body, Pilates uses later rib cage breathing in order to engage the abdominal muscles in a deeper way and promote stability of the spine.
They are both “slow” exercises. Yes they both start out focusing on establishing a basic routine of movement that progresses into a faster and more complex sequence.
There is no high impact in either of them.
That’s pretty much all they have in common.
Pilates is a workout. Its goal is strengthening the muscles to a better body alignment and promote a pain free posture, so we do exercises.
Yoga is a mind body connection through movement. Each pose is supposed to stimulate certain chakras to promote deeper connection within our bodies and souls.
Pilates is a routine of exercises, with a fix number of repetitions with a very specific order.
Yoga is a series of poses that flow into each other.
Pilates is a workout will make you look more toned, taller, with slimmer muscles, maybe also make you lose weight.
Yoga will relax your mind and body, help your daily stress, and cope with life better.
Pilates has a physical approach to movement, anatomically based.
Yoga has a more mental approach to movement.
Obviously any healthy movement will result in an overall wellbeing, improvement of the look and the mood.
There is no right and wrong movement, good program or bad program. Each one should find the more appropriate form of exercises, something that is fun and entertaining so that the workout becomes the happy time of the day and not a daily homework. The general advice is to exercise 20 minutes everyday. 20 minutes of everything, a fast walk, a bit of swimming, a simple yoga or Pilates routine, something more cardio, like a run and a cardio class.
Movement heals from pain, no matter which type of movement one prefers.