If you are having problems making a decision between yoga and Pilates, and don’t know anything about the differences between these two exercise forms or disciplines, we can help! There are a few factors to consider before choosing, and learning more about these teachings can help you to make a more informed decision. Remember that whether you choose to do yoga or Pilates in Pretoria, it is essential that the one you choose becomes a part of your life and that you attend regular sessions or classes. Which one you choose will also depend on the results you are looking for.
· Consider your goals: Do you have any injuries or conditions that may require some form of rehabilitation? Pilates is really good for treating physical injuries, and helps to reduce pain, increase range of movement and also promotes faster recovery from injuries. Yoga tends to be better for those looking for mental or emotional healing, and it often includes a more spiritual element than Pilates. Practicing Pilates does also help with stress relief and emotional wellbeing, but is less spiritually focused. If toning and strengthening your core is very important to you, then Pilates will be your best bet – especially in the shorter term.
· Evaluate the differences: Yoga is an ancient discipline that originated in India, and forms the core of a lifestyle. Pilates is a relatively new discipline that becomes part of a lifestyle. But they are also very similar in many ways – both help to improve mental and emotional wellbeing, increase flexibility and physical health. Yoga is, however, focused on improving the mind and mental wellbeing, and the body is strengthened as a side effect, whereas Pilates is more concerned with the body, but with mental health benefits.
While breathing is used as a technique by both disciplines, in Pilates the breathing is used to bring more oxygen and energy to the muscles while performing movements. In yoga, breathing is used more for relaxation purposes. Yoga also places great focus on flexibility, and while Pilates movements do help with flexibility, the main focus is strength. Pilates can also be performed with equipment that provides extra resistance, whereas yoga uses the body weight and gravity to provide resistance.
· Give both a try: If you are still not sure which one to choose, you could take a few classes in yoga and Pilates to see which one works best for you. Note that you also don’t really have to choose because these two disciplines complement each other very well, which means that you can draw different benefits from both when you incorporate both in your exercise routine. Often, athletes and dancers use a combination in order to improve their physical strength and flexibility through Pilates, and also to reap the benefits of mental clarity, focus and relaxation provided by yoga.
If you are interested in attending yoga or Pilates in Pretoria, please give our friendly team at BASI Pilates a call to book a class. We will also be able to answer any questions that you may have about Pilates and help you to make an informed decision.