Yoga vs Pilates, for athletes

  • gallus81

    Posts: 350

    Nov 17, 2009 4:03 AM GMT
    I've recently started Yoga classes, and have attended a number of Pilates classes over the years.

    What do people suggest is more beneficial for athletes looking to compliment their regular training? Obviously much of it comes down to personal preference, and how good the instructor is, but I'm interested in what people have to say on the subject.

    And while we're on it, can you recommend any good DVDs for either Yoga or Pilates? Because of my work schedule I can't always make it to classes and would like to be able to supplement the classes with my own training.

    thanks all.
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    Nov 17, 2009 4:54 AM GMT
    fit in both, even of you do half and half or even some pilates/yoga fused classes.

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    Nov 17, 2009 5:05 AM GMT
    I've been doing yoga at my gym on and off for about 3 years now. Helps to keep me flexible and prevent because I'm all tense.
  • gallus81

    Posts: 350

    Nov 17, 2009 5:24 AM GMT
    I'm sold on the benefits of both Pilates and Yoga ... actually, can someone give me a simple (if that's possible) explanation of the difference between the two?

    Other than that Yoga has been around a hell of a lot longer, and has spiritual connotations connected with the poses, etc, that is.
  • SoCalMark

    Posts: 11

    Nov 17, 2009 6:00 AM GMT
    I own the #1 Yoga Studio in Orange County CA and we have what one woman from Australia said "the best pilates staff in the world" I have certifications in both. Yoga is more spiritual and better I would say for stress reduction, flexibility, endurance and in some aspects strength but Pilates hands down works the core and I find so many people with weak cores in yoga and eventually their lower back will start paining them. Both are really important and compliment eachother.
  • UStriathlete

    Posts: 320

    Nov 17, 2009 6:03 AM GMT
    yoga is about stretching in poses, breathing into poses. letting go

    pilates is about alignment and strength and control.

    they are both very different.

    you should be doing sporting specific strength work during regular season training and racing.

    yoga/pilates is more of an off season activity.
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    Nov 17, 2009 6:14 AM GMT
    Great Question, As a practitioner of both I think I can shed some light on the subject. Yoga, for the most part, involves static poses, which are held while exploring your breathing, physical feelings and emotions. Pilates is about moving in ways that help strengthen your powerhouse, including your stabilizing muscles. Yoga emphasizes flexibility over building strength (although it enhances both), while Pilates emphasizes toning over flexibility (but, again, it enhances both). Yoga also take a more lifestyle approach to it's practice incorporating a spiritual aspect while Pilates truly focuses on movement and breathe. Lastly I do think it's important to mention that Yoga, from the Sanskrit word 'Yuj' is about uniting the physical self and the cosmic self while Pilates was developed on top of a series of rehabilitative movements to aid in speedy recovery.
  • gallus81

    Posts: 350

    Nov 17, 2009 6:36 AM GMT
    thanks all ...

    any ideas on good DVDs that can assist when I can't get to an instructor?
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    Nov 17, 2009 6:46 AM GMT
    Pilates and Yoga are two completely different modes of exercise. Try doing both. Yoga is more for flexibility (also helps with muscle stability) and pilates is great for a strong, stable core and good posture. Both are very good at making you aware of your own body, but i would say to do both.
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    Nov 17, 2009 10:06 AM GMT
    On a purely physical level, both yoga and pilates work flexibility and strength, though the balance differs

    There is much less work on the peripheries (arms and legs) in pilates. We work everything, but always moving from the center. Arm balances are only found at super advanced level (yes pilates has arm balances)

    Yoga often has a lifestyle component attached, though not inevitably.

    In pilates we move from the center with control, concentration and precision and use the breath to create a flow between the exercises.

    You have concentration and an emphasis on breath in yoga, and in some traditions there is a very strong emphasis on precision (e.g. iyengar)

    physically some sorts of yoga tend to cause the ribs to splay out (you are given the instruction "open the chest" but you are not working pulling in the stomach). I have seen this a number of times with students.

    DVDs... for yoga try Rodney Yee, Baron Baptiste (if I think of more names then I´ll let you know).

    Pilates not sure what to suggest... never used one. In pilates very small differences change the exercise, so it´s harder to learn the real stuff from a book or DVD... you need a teacher there to see what you are doing.
  • gallus81

    Posts: 350

    Nov 17, 2009 11:08 AM GMT
    thanks lostboy and everyone else, handy info.
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    Nov 17, 2009 7:19 PM GMT
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    Nov 17, 2009 9:15 PM GMT
    You might try Bryan Kest too


    Is he gay? icon_rolleyes.gif

    For pilates maybe

    NB I have not used any of these DVDs, i just know of the people and the sort of practices they re likely to include and they are all well known. Brooke Siler trained at the same time and the same place as my pilates teacher from chile

    For Baron Baptiste something like

    Rodney Yee