Wednesday, September 13, 2023

Pilates or Yoga? Which One is Right For You?

Pilates or Yoga? What do they both offer? How are they different? Which one is right for me? I have the answers to your questions and more, so keep reading this article to learn more.

Since the new year is here and people are hitting the gym in the usual new year’s fashion. However, if you’re looking to improve yourself and your body, but not one for intense workouts, then try yoga, pilates, or both! 

Both of these choices offer you many benefits, but how do you know which one, or if both are right for you? Keep reading to learn the differences between the two and find out which one you should try next.

One woman doing Pilates in doors.


Let’s start with the basics, Pilates was formed by Joseph Pilates in the 20th century. Pilates involves a combination of exercise and body conditioning. It was mainly used by dancers who were recovering from injuries. 

This is due to the fact that many dancers are taking numerous classes and spend hours upon hours practicing the same thing. This repetition creates an imbalance in the body as only certain muscles are wearing out. Pilates help restore balance throughout the entire body, which is why it’s used for injury recovery.

Pilates also focuses on muscle toning as well as breathing, balancing, and concentration of the controlled movements. 

One woman doing yoga in her apartment.


Unlike Pilates, Yoga is an ancient practice with deep roots within history and culture. Now its popularity has skyrocketed as a study finds that 1 in 7 adults have done yoga within the past 12 months. 

If you regularly practice yoga, you’ll have better endurance, strength, calmness, flexibility, and overall well-being. There are also six branches of yoga, Hatha, Raja, Karma, Bhakti, Juana, and Tantra. Depending on what you want to focus on, you’re sure to find a specific form of yoga to help you with it.

Aside from the six branches, there are also 8 major styles of yoga, everything from hot yoga to prenatal and power yoga are found here. Whether you try one or mix it up, there’s a type of yoga that you’re sure to love and stick with.

Two women doing yoga.

Benefits of Both

Now, we know that there are benefits to them both, otherwise, who would bother doing them? Let’s break down the benefits for both of them and compare and contrast so you can see which one is the right fit for you and your goals.

Both Pilates and Yoga promote overall well-being to your body and can help your strength. They also both can help tone your abdominal muscles but will see quicker results through Pilates since it’s a bit more intense than Yoga. 

If you experience back pain, both of these will help relieve some pain while also strengthening your back muscles. Specifically for yoga, talk to your instructor beforehand, as some poses may put more strain on your back. Luckily, there are always alternative poses you can do instead that will still give you the same results. 

Woman on the beach doing Pilates.

How They Differ

If improving your flexibility is your main goal, then stick to just Yoga. Pilates focuses more on relaxing the muscles, not so much on improving flexibility. 

Whether strengthening your body or your mind is your main goal, Yoga can help you achieve both. Yoga has been said to help people who suffer from depression or anxiety since this ancient practice works with your mind as well as your body. 

The usage of breathing also differs between the two. While Pilates simply uses breathing techniques to help with the exercises, breathing in Yoga is its own special service that provides you with additional benefits such as relaxing and clearing your mind.

Woman doing online yoga

Online or In-Person?

One of the many benefits of technology is that convenience will always be on your side. Whether you attend in-person classes and make friends, or if you want to use online classes as a way to have alone time, you are sure to find a method that works for you and your lifestyle.

For beginners who want to take classes from the comfort of their own home, we recommend you try Glo. They offer both Pilates and Yoga classes with over 4,000 to choose from. Glo also provides live classes too, with people from all over the world, so even if you choose to exercise from home, you can still make connections with other people.

Woman on phone while relaxing on the beach.

Share With Us

Do you take Pilates or Yoga classes? Which one do you prefer? Are there any teachers/instructors reading this? Share your thoughts by tagging @uylmagazine on social media.

Can’t get enough of fitness and self-care topics? Neither can we! So be sure to check out our, “Self Care” section and read more articles on the topics you love.


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