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Yoga vs Pilates

Movement Therapy by Mira Boeyens

Should I be doing yoga or pilates, is one superior over the other… and what is actually the difference between the two? 

Firstly, both yoga and pilates is for everyone, from complete beginners to advanced gurus. However, there are some differences that’s noteworthy, especially if you are recovering from an injury. 

Pilates is powerful as it caters to all levels, including those after injury/surgery. Pilates is often my “go to” when reintroducing exercise/starting rehabilitation after injury. The benefit with pilates, is that you can more easily focus on activating, recruiting and strengthening specific localised muscles. 

You can perform certain exercises on the equipment available, such as the reformer, which you otherwise would not have been able to do without it. The equipment allows us to start with exercises, activating and recruiting the correct muscles- without pain, that would not have been possible otherwise. 

As you progress, you strengthen and heal, your programme is progressively advanced to challenge you, molding you into a fitter, stronger version of yourself that will support a body that is less likely to reinjure. 

You can think of yoga as an exercise for both your mind and body. It will challenge your mind-body connection, flexibility, strength and balance through a specifically designed class, where postures/exercises are sequenced to flow together at varying tempo’s.

Some classes are slow, involving sustained stretches to improve muscle length and postural imbalances, while other classes flow through a variety of movements that challenge balance, strength and endurance.

Yoga focuses on the entire body; deep body strengthening and conditioning, stretching, mind and breath work. Which is incorporated through the classes to calm the mind and find a deeper awareness and connection with your body and movement.

Yoga may not be ideal if you have an acute injury where pain levels are above 4/10. If you are a client at Auckland Physiotherapy, where Mira leads the yoga class, that can be accommodated with her supervision, but it is definitely not recommended in a generic class outside of Auckland Physiotherapy.

An initial one on one consultation with one of our physiotherapists is required prior to enrolling into classes, this is vitally important. During this appointment, a comprehensive assessment is completed, which includes assessing and recording any muscle imbalances/weaknesses, problematic and painful areas. Based on this information, we can guide you and advise which would be the best movement therapy to start with.

We will establish your goals, and plan an evidence based treatment plan to achieve them!

Senior Physiotherapist, Pilates & Yoga instructor.

Book an appointment with Mira HERE

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