The short answer is it depends on your goal. Do you hope to improve your heart's health, lose weight, or tone and strengthen? Though yoga and pilates are similar in many ways, they can help you achieve different exercise and fitness goals.

Here is everything you need to know about pilates and yoga to help you decide which one is right for you!

Pilates

A form of rehabilitation and strengthening, pilates tends to work the abdomen, obliques, lower back, inner and outer thighs, and buttocks. Pilates consists of repetitive strength training exercises that lead to improved:

  • Core strength and stability
  • Posture and balance
  • Flexibility

Pilates is also great for the prevention and treatment of back pain because it is low-impact. Will pilates help you achieve your personal fitness goals?

Heart health

If you’re new to pilates, it will only offer a mild aerobic challenge that’s similar to walking slowly. But as you become more familiar, advanced classes will kick up your heart rate to that of speed walking.

Weight loss

You can expect to burn between 150 and 200 calories an hour with a beginner pilates routine, and between 250 and 400 calories per hour with an advanced pilates workout. If you want to lose weight, do four 60-minute sessions of pilates each week.

Body strength and flexibility

Pilates is known to really strengthen your core, especially the abdominal muscles and obliques. You should also notice increased flexibility in your back, hips, and hamstrings after a few pilates sessions.

Pilates is ideal for you if you’re looking to lose weight and increase your body strength, especially your core.

coolsculpting

Yoga

Yoga is a type of exercise that has been around for thousands of years. There are over nine major types of yoga, so finding a yoga style you like shouldn’t be a problem. Many styles of yoga tend to emphasize flexibility, strength, and posture.

Can yoga help you reach your fitness goals?

Heart health

Though most types of yoga don’t provide cardio, research has shown that yoga can lower blood pressure and slow your heart rate. But if you’re looking to strengthen your heart, check out power yoga, which gives the heart the same aerobic workout as a brisk stroll.

Weight loss

You’ll burn roughly 150 to 200 calories during a 60 minute yoga class, and between 250 and 300 calories during an hour of power yoga. If you want to drop pounds, then yoga alone may not be the right exercise for you. Instead, combine yoga with a high-intensity activity like running.

Body strength and flexibility

Yoga poses work by stretching your muscles, so yoga is amazing if you want to improve your flexibility. In fact, one study showed that people improved their flexibility by 35% after only two months of yoga. Yoga can also improve body strength if you engage in the more vigorous types like power yoga and ashtanga.

Yoga might be right up your alley is you’re looking to increase body strength and flexibility.

It's all good

Whether you choose pilates or yoga, you're sure to realize benefits. Just by moving you'll begin to look and feel the way you always knew you could.

References

  1. "How To Decide If Yoga Or Pilates Is Right For You, "The Huffington Post, June 25, 2015.
  2. "Yoga vs Pilates," The Guardian, September 28, 2007.
  3. "Yoga vs. Pilates," Oprah.com, July 22, 2008.
  4. "Yoga Vs Pilates: Which One’s For You?, "Marie Claire," January 13, 2015.

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