What is Pilates? Yoga and Pilates – which is the perfect choice for you?

Yoga and pilates are two disciplines that have a lot in common. However, yoga is more popular, so what is pilates? Is Pilates the same as yoga? If you do not really understand, it will be difficult for you to choose the most suitable subject for your training purposes.

What is Pilates?

Pilates is a discipline that has its roots in yoga and was developed by athlete Joseph Pilates at the end of World War I. Initially, this exercise was used to rehabilitate wounded soldiers. Pilates brought this practice to the US in 1923 and he spent a lot of time perfecting this training method.

Pilates not only focuses on building strength, but it also helps you strengthen your will, improve flexibility of the body. Pilates is also famous for its full body weight loss exercises. Pilates is not really popular in Vietnam, but this subject is also popular in Western countries such as yoga, gym, cardio …

Benefits of practicing pilates

Like other sports, pilates has certain benefits for our health and body:

  • Pilates exercises can help treat chronic back pain. When practicing pilates exercises will help you neutralize rotation movements, increase the amount of muscles in your back and minimize injuries that affect your back.
  • Pilates helps to lose weight effectively. When practicing pilates exercises will work the whole body instead of certain muscle groups. At the same time, pilates helps you increase metabolism and burn fat better.
  • Pilates helps improve your posture and optimize your physique. After a period of pilates practice, you will notice that your body is slimmer and toned, no more excess fat.
  • Pilates helps you strengthen your body. One of the benefits of long-term pilates training is to increase muscle strength, flexibility, and give you an active body.

Pilates and yoga are both gentle disciplines that help the body become supple and flexible. Both of these disciplines are very useful forms of physical exercise, helping to increase overall health and improve quality of life.

However, despite many similarities, these are still two separate disciplines. Therefore, you need to clearly see the differences and similarities between them before making a decision on which subject to practice.

Similarities and differences between pilates and yoga

Similarities Between Yoga and Pilates

Pilates is a practice inspired by yoga. Therefore, these two disciplines will have certain similarities. Even the two have similar poses:

  • Both yoga and pilates do not require the practitioner to use too many assistive devices. All you need to practice this subject is just a mat and a few additional equipment such as exercise bricks, exercise rings, etc.
  • Both focus on using the breath properly during exercise.
  • Both yoga and pilates require mental focus and can help reduce stress.
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Difference between pilates and yoga

Pilates – Focus and muscle strength

Pilates focuses on muscle strength, body flexibility, and using core strength from the inside. In pilates, sequences of movements are performed continuously using certain muscle groups.

Therefore, the correct breathing will be done by inhaling through the nose and exhaling through the mouth. This is to provide enough oxygen to the brain, thereby helping the muscles to exercise under high intensity.


Pilates mainly focuses on the process of increasing strength, toning muscles and increasing flexibility for the body

Yoga – Relaxation and Peace

Yoga can be seen as a form of mental exercise. Because this type of practice is a combination of physical activity and mental focus to increase awareness of breath and energy.

Meditation and deep breathing are key features of yoga. Although this subject has many different types and exercises, the main purpose is still to create a harmonious combination of body, mind and breath.

You can tell the most obvious difference through some of the following comparison details:

  • Pilates usually begins with movements that have a small range of motion and will gradually build up in the area of ​​the joints. Meanwhile, yoga poses keep the joints in place and focus on strengthening the main muscles. In addition, the breathing technique in pilates and yoga also has a big difference.
  • When practicing yoga, breathing exercises are the key to relaxation. During the exercise, focusing on breathing is very important, you will have to breathe to bring energy to tight muscles to relax muscle groups in the body. Opposite vWith pilates, breathing is about sending energy to the muscles to increase muscle strength. Focusing on breathing while doing pilates will help you control the amount of oxygen that goes into your body to reach your muscles.
  • The biggest difference between yoga and pilates is the mental factor. Yoga brings a sense of peace, tranquility, relaxation through meditation or breathing exercises. Pilates is mainly focused on the process of increasing strength, toning muscles and increasing flexibility. Therefore, the mental and spiritual factors will also be less compared to yoga.

Yoga and Pilates: Which is Right for You?

Yoga and Pilates are both great forms of exercise. If you are having health problems, you can consult your doctor or specialist about which exercise is best for your body.

In yoga, there will be many exercises that require flexibility of the joints, especially the spine, hips and wrists. Most poses can be adjusted to suit your health. However, in the long run, you will be very interested in this subject at an advanced level.

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Yoga will have many exercises that require flexibility of the joints

Pilates can be a great choice for the elderly or those recovering from an injury because these exercises have a small range of motion.

Yoga is spiritual, helping to improve flexibility and balance. Meanwhile, pilates are good for improving posture, building strength, and toning muscles. In general, the difference between yoga and pilates is not much and depending on the ability of your body, you can choose for yourself a suitable discipline.

Reference source

Pilates vs. Yoga: The Differences and What’s Right for You https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/pilates-vs-yoga#1 Accessed date: 4/25/2020

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