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Before you decide where your fitness journey is headed, it’s equally important to understand what you want to achieve throughout this journey. This is where your understanding of your own body comes into play. We all have varied fitness goals, and that’s exactly why the same type of routine cannot work for everyone.

There’s a long-standing debate between Yoga and Pilates; two forms of fitness and exercise that are similar and yet different in many ways. While Yoga focuses primarily on strength and flexibility, Pilates has more to do with core conditioning and posture. However, before we extrapolate the two and understand which might be suitable for whom, it’s essential to know that both forms of exercise are quite beneficial to the body and mind, and are quite different from a gym or weighted workout.

Breaking It Down

1. Yoga

Yoga has been around for centuries and has only become more and more popular in the recent times. For most people, Yoga is a combination of both physical and mental wellness, and also provides a much-needed sense of balance and flexibility. There are many different forms of Yoga, each one with a special purpose of its own. The poses have meanings and significance, targeting varied parts of the body and mind.

What are the benefits of practicing Yoga?

Better flexibility

Yoga stretches and postures are such that every limb in your body is pushed to its maximum. Of course, it’s never easy if you’re a beginner and your body is generally stiff. With time and continuous practice, you can see improved results and enhanced flexibility is one of them. A flexible body is an absolute advantage because it increases agility as well.

Improved mental state

Yoga has become remedial in many ways to deal with mental health and well-being. Some Yoga postures require you to sit still, calm the mind and practice breathing techniques that also calm the nerves and redirect your flow of thought into the right channels. Many gurus and teachers believe that Yoga is a medicine for the mind.

Increased stability

As we grow older, our physical stability tends to diminish. You may not have the same body balance that you did a few years ago. Stability, again, is important for the body because it improves strength and stamina, and also makes you feel more confident about undertaking physically challenging tasks.

In a nutshell

Yoga isn’t restricted to any particular gender or age group. Even a child or an aging person can easily take up the practice of Yoga and see commendable results with time. If overall mental and physical stability is your goal, then Yoga is for you. However, Yoga is not a quick process, and it will not show drastic physical results in terms of shape and muscle toning, which is something to consider.

2. Pilates

Pilates was first known as “Contrology” in the 1920s and was designed to treat and heal injuries without the use of machines. Once it became a more popular form, people from all walks of life and all ages took to this exercise form. Pilates uses a combination of different moves, all of which can be modified to suit your specific needs. Pilates is more a style of exercise than discipline, but its benefits are commendable.

What are the benefits of practicing Pilates?

Improved posture

A lot of people struggle with maintaining the right posture, and this has a lot to do with a hunched back or a weak core. Good posture can have a lot of benefits and also facilitate better upper body balance and strength. Especially for those with weaker muscles and bones, an exercise form like Pilates can be quite beneficial.

Better core strength

Pilates puts a lot of emphasis on increasing core strength and also conditioning the back muscles, which is quite advantageous. Core strength helps with becoming the foundation for building strength is all other parts of the body, whilst also strengthening muscle fibers and making the body more stable. With Pilates, your core is bound to become twice as strong!

Streamlined focus

Pilates exercises are quite offbeat and different from your regular workouts. Mastering different exercises require some time and a lot of mental concentration. So, practicing Pilates regularly can surely improve your focus and concentration skills, which in-turn conditions and trains the mind to be more efficient.

In a nutshell

Pilates, again, can be performed by people of any age but is definitely more specific to people with problems related to blood pressure, bones, muscles, and other physical ailments. So, if your focus is on building core strength and increasing the overall resistance of your muscles and bones, Pilates would be the more suitable choice.

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