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Over the years, a lot of people have been having a problem choosing from Pilates and Yoga for weight loss and this is because the two practices are similar.

However, it is going to be an advantage for someone that can easily differentiate between the two practices.

Knowing which practice to choose between – Pilates or Yoga – will go a long way in getting the best results.

This article will help you choose the best practice that would work not only for weight loss but also for other important uses.

Pilates reformer workout exercises woman at gym

Origin of Pilates

Pilates is one of the numerous physical fitness systems, and it was invented in the early 1900s by a German named Joseph Pilate. Hence, the name “Pilates”.

Joseph was an enemy alien in England during this period, so he decided to teach other enemy aliens in the country especially the ones on the sickbed. However, he left England for Germany, his home country, after the war.

Pilates was introduced as an exercise in Germany and gained popularity in the German dance communities. Joseph wanted his invention to be known all over the world, so he traveled to the United States to earn the practice more popularity.

Well, his aim was successful because the New York ballet decided to practice Joseph’s exercises. Pilates has been a common practice since the early 20th century till today especially among the western nations like the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, and Europe but it is now spreading to other parts of the world including Asia and Africa.

Once you get comfortable with pilates, you can further improve your exercise with the help of pilates reformer machine or other useful gear.

woman in black yoga pants doing yoga

Origin of Yoga

Yoga is originated from India thousands of years ago and was considered to be among the six common orthodox schools present in the Hindu philosophical country tradition.

Yoga is of various types thereby giving learners a few options to choose.

Yoga came to the western world in the early 1900s through the Indian monks. It is unique because it combines mental, physical and spiritual disciplines.

Over the years, Yoga or modern Hatha yoga is a common practice seen all over the world, but we should always have it at the back of our minds that Yoga is from India.

To always feel comfortable when doing yoga and get the best results, it is a good idea to invest in the right equipment too. So take a look at the best yoga mats or best yoga swings if you really want to take it to the next level.

The origin of Pilates and Yoga has shown a slight difference between the two practices, and I believe that knowing the origin of the two will help to identify each practice.

Which is Better for Weight Loss?

Losing weight is one of the top priorities of most people.

It is no more a fact that it is easier to add weight than getting rid of the excess fat. Thus, it is very important to get rid of this fat by any means because it is very dangerous to health.

Over the years, a lot of people find it very difficult to choose between Pilates and yoga for weight loss but below are some of the points to consider before selecting between Yoga and Pilates for weight loss.

Calories Burned

Considering the number of calories burned, yoga could be the perfect option compared to Pilates.

This is because you may burn 600 calories with an hour of yoga exercises and it could be more than this depending on the type of yoga you are performing.

In terms of method, routines that deal with breathing and flexibility may burn less compared to the routine that uses more strength and physical activities that may burn more than the 600 calories.

Pilates does not burn fat better than yoga because practicing Pilates for an hour will only burn about 300 calories.

Muscle Toning

Did you know that it is possible to gain muscles without losing weight?

Well, it is possible!

In fact, in some cases, a person might think that he or she has lost a significant amount of pounds but still weigh the same thing when stepping on a scale.

This is as a result of some fitness programs that allow weight loss and muscle building at the same time. Muscle toning will make you feel lighter because the excess fat would vacate while muscles will occupy the spaces.

Considering muscle toning, Pilates is more effective and efficient when compared to yoga.

Pairing with a Diet

Food is the main factor that increases the body fat; thus there is always a need to live on a good diet.

It should be noted that it takes nothing less than 3,500 calories to lose a pound.

Therefore, you should watch what you eat.

Should this stop you from eating? NO. Doing regular exercise combined with a balanced diet will make you lose excess fat in the body.

Yoga and Pilates are some of the activities that could help maintain a good shape but considering which one is better; yoga will make you burn excess fat faster than Pilates, but the two are effective in burning body fat.

woman doing yoga exercise

Difference Between Yoga and Pilates

There are lots of points that distinguish Pilates and Yoga, and some of the points are:


This is a very important point to consider because each practice has its approach to exercise.

Take, for instance, Pilates is a form of body and mind approach while yoga combines body, spirit and mind approach to exercise.

Areas That They Focus On

This is another important point to consider when distinguishing Pilates from yoga.

Pilates focuses on breathing, movement, and mental concentration.

While Yoga focuses on every aspect of being that includes us, searching for the right balance in our lifestyles and life.

Physical Focus

The physical and strength areas of focus in the Pilates and Yoga are different.

In the sense that Pilates focuses on building the inner strength of the body and also works on the spine while Yoga focuses on therapeutic and also works on uniting the body system with spirit and mind.

Also, Yoga helps individuals find harmony, happiness and release stress.

How They Are Performed

The two activities are different because Pilates is all about different moves that help strengthen the body and the powerhouse, including stabilizing muscles.

While Yoga is about maintaining static poses, breathing, plus emotions and physical feelings are the important factors of Yoga.

Importance of Nutrition in Losing Weight Using Pilates or Yoga

Since Pilates and Yoga are both forms of exercise, one cannot neglect the importance of nutrition in getting the best result from the two activities.

To get a good result from any of the two, one needs to eat the right food or diet at the right time. Also, water is very important in getting a good result.

Pros and Cons of Pilates And Yoga

three women doing yoga exercise

The Pros of Pilates

Pilates has a lot of pros some of which are:

  • It is a good way to strengthen the body especially the core muscles thus increasing the overall strength and fitness of an individual.
  • It is a good option for improving body flexibility and balance.
  • It is a good option for beginners because a lot of people find Pilates very easy due to the fact that it does not require too much of flexibility compared to Yoga.
  • It improves proper growth in the sense that it helps maintain body posture thus adding one or more inches to the height.
  • It enhances body range of motion and awareness thus a good recommendation for athletes.
  • It can be very useful in rehabilitating muscle or bone injuries.

The Cons of Pilates

Below are some of the numerous cons of Pilates:

  • It is a very weak way to burn fat when compared to other exercises like swimming, cycling, and running.
  • To achieve a good result, one needs to perform Pilates regularly and very precisely.
  • Sometimes, getting the aimed result may take a while even when one puts a lot of hard work into it.
  • Because Pilates is a form of anaerobic exercise, you might need to add other exercises to achieve a good result on time.

The Pros of Yoga

Yoga has a lot of good disadvantages some of which are:

  • It is natural and a perfect way to lose weight.
  • It is an efficient way to cure numerous diseases like diabetes, migraine, hypertension, back pain, depression, and many others.
  • It is an excellent way to keep body and mind together.
  • It is very efficient in losing weight when compared to Pilates.
  • It is a fast way of building muscles.

The Cons of Yoga

Although Yoga is a good form of exercise, it has some disadvantages some of which are:

  • Because it is a very effective way of losing weight, studios might charge very high for training.
  • Practicing alone or practicing without full knowledge of the process may lead to injury and cramps in muscles.
  • It may require other forms of exercise before one can achieve a good result.

To Sum It All Up

Finally, Pilates and Yoga are good activities to lose some weight; although Yoga seems to be more effective in getting a quick result, Pilates is also a perfect way to get an excellent result with hard work and determination.

If you have any further questions or you just want to tell your story with yoga or Pilates, please feel free to share with this community of like-minded women.

emma lynn

Hi, I’m Emma Lynn

I’m a proud mother of two wonderful children and a wife to a loving, affectionate husband. I enjoy exercise – yoga (yes, I teach yoga as well), running, and going to different fitness classes from time to time.

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