Yoga Or Pilates Which Should You Select?

Yoga and Pilates are among the best workouts performed by athletics and exercise enthusiastic. Both these exercises provide several health benefits such as strong body, improved nervous system, and respiratory system, controlled blood pressure and better co-ordination in different body muscles. Well, both these exercises are often misconceived and treated as same. But, these have differences and so considered as different from one another. Yoga exercises involve less impact and can be easily performed by most of the people. On the other hand, Pilates involve greater impact than yoga and can be only be performed by people who have decent strength. No, it does mean Pilates cannot be performed by women. After performing training and acquiring strength, you will surely perform Pilates. Pilates can be performed with or without weights or exercise tools. According to your requirements and exercise goals, you can select particular types of pilates poses. In this article, I have shared some differences and also shared which should you select – yoga or pilates:

  • Evolution

Yoga is a very old technique. It originated in India about 5000 years ago. Some popular types of yoga that evolved at that time include Bikram, Kripalu, Ashtanga, and Vinyasa. Over the years, many new yoga postures have been originated. The common yoga poses include Bhujangasana, chakra-asana, DHA nur asana, Halasana, etc. And Pilates has been with us from the 20th century. It was originated by an athlete, Joseph Pilates. He created this just for the purpose of strengthening and rehabilitation. The popularity of Pilates increased because of dance activities. Many dancers used Pilates for building their muscles and becoming stronger. Sooner, Pilates reached all parts of the world and became a very popular exercise.

  • Strength and Flexibility

 Both yoga and Pilates are great for achieving strength and flexibility. But, Pilates exercises focus more on the back and spine. And yoga exercises focus more on improving the core strength. Most yoga postures end with a count-down period that helps in improving more energy and oxygen. Due to this, people perform more exercises and develop better balance. Some Pilates moves that help in imparting strength, make use of exercise tools or weights. While other Pilates moves that are performed without exercise machines improve the body’s resistance to fatigue or resistance. In short, we can say Pilates main motive is to improve the body posture. And yoga’s main motive is to improve the strength of the core and abdomen muscles.

  • Place

Whether you are at the gym or in the home, you can perform yoga and pilates. Yoga asanas can be performed anywhere and at any time. You just need to make your mind and learn right techniques for performing yoga asanas. Most yoga asanas such as Tadasana, padmasana, DHA nor asana, behung asana, etc. are easy to perform and can be done by people of all ages. And for effective Pilates moves, you need to buy exercise tools or weights. However, you can also perform simple Pilates exercises without specific tools. But, pilates exercises that involve exercise tools offer greater health benefits. In yoga also, asanas that involve greater impact provide more health benefits than asanas that involve less strength. Therefore, you can select any type of Pilates exercises and yoga asanas based on your goals and requirements.

  • Sets or Reps

Both pilates and yoga involve ground and standing poses. Both these exercises help in achieving some goals. But they work in a different manner. Pilates high impact moves ask for specific sets or counts. You need to perform particular reps of Pilates by using exercise tools. Pilates involves training of the core in specific sets (10 or more). On the other hand, yoga’s stretching, twisting and pushing asanas do not involve sets. You just need to focus on your technique, your mind, and your soul. You need to maintain the specific yoga asana for a decent period of time. Yoga asanas also allow for repetitions. The aim of yoga asanas is to improve balance and coordination between mental and physical organs.

  • Body Benefits

Yoga and Pilates both offer vast health and athletic benefits. Yoga minimizes lower back pain by correcting muscle imbalances and strengthening tight or compact muscles. And pilates decreases lower back pain by improving the core power and enhancing the neuro-muscular connection around the spine. Yoga also improves the nervous system and avoid cardiovascular health diseases. Yoga and pilates both help in avoiding arthritis pain, joint pain, Alzheimer’s disease, high blood pressure and high cholesterol. Moreover, you can also avoid mental depression and other chronic diseases. These exercises also provide specific benefits to athletes. With yoga, you can enhance balance, strength and muscle flexibility. These three things are essential for becoming a wonderful athlete. Pilates particularly helpful in improving the spinal flexibility and imparting fantastic strength to the core muscles. Spinal flexibility makes a person to run faster or perform better cycling. Both pilates and yoga exercises involve a specific breathing technique that increases the blood flow. Therefore, you can become a tremendous athlete by performing yoga asanas or pilates moves.

  • Mental Strength

In addition to physical strength, you would be asking for mental strength also. Here also, yoga and pilates both get equal marks. But, yoga is certainly considered as better exercise. Yoga asanas help in providing spiritual wellbeing. Breathing and stretching techniques involve in yoga improve control, coordination, and relaxation. Pilates are considered as mind-body exercises. They do help in removing stress and providing relaxation. But, you need to attain a particular concentration in pilates moves, which can be attained at certain times. So, you might not acquire fantastic mental strength with Pilates moves. Both exercises help in improving secretion of happy hormones such as serotonin, endorphins, etc. But, overall, yoga is considered as the better option for enhancing mental strength.

My Verdict

It is difficult to say – which is better – yoga or pilates. Both these exercises help in enhancing physical strength and mental strength. Both these exercises help in improving balance, control, and coordination. Both these exercises can be performed at any place and at any time. So, I suggest you select yoga, pilates or both. Well, the combination of both is the best option for you. However, if you want to be specific towards your goals and want better strength, you should select pilates. And if you want to enhance your nervous system and get better coordination, you should go for yoga. But, you need to select one at least for staying fit and healthy.