Clarifying Pilates and Yoga
November 3, 2009
I am writing in response to Rhonda Beckham’s article entitled “Yoga or Pilates?” In responding to her readers requests, it seems that some information was missing. This letter to is help clarify and provide readers with a better understanding of the difference between the two.
The roots of the Pilates work out lie in self-defense and dance training.
The work out was first used in military rehabilitation. Joseph Pilates created exercise equipment to help bed-ridden patients exercise. Later, his program provided dancers with a practice that helped them “limber up” before practicing routines. Many of the “stretches” used are adapted from the asana or physical posturing of Yoga.
Yoga, on the other hand is a practice that incorporates alignment, strength through movement and isometric holding as well as breathing, focus, balance and spiritual practice. Although some Yoga classes focus on only the physical part (asana) a true practice incorporates self-study and attention inward. It is a non-dogmatic practice with a history based in science and aruveyda.
While Pilates focuses on strength, Yoga focuses on whole self.
So, before you step into either class, it’s important to evaluate your goals. Is your focus purely physical, or are you looking to get to know yourself?
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