Thursday, September 6, 2012

Yoga Or Pilates? Try Yogilates

Not sure about which to try, Yoga or Pilates? Why not try a fusion of the two called Yogalates (also spelled Yogilates)? As more and more people practice yoga, fitness experts and enthusiasts are finding ways to westernize it and make it more valuable or interesting to the general public - and this is an offshoot of that movement.

What is Yogalates?

Yogalates is a blend of yoga and Pilates created by certified Pilate’s instructor and personal trainer Jonathan Urla in 1997.

Downward Dog Yoga Pose - Adho Mukha Shvanasana...
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Yoga is an eastern Indian practice developed centuries ago that focuses on strength, flexibility, and often spirituality. Yoga has been modified and adapted to various beliefs so there are now many different types of yoga. Some focus more on breath while others focus on heat and detoxification, while others focus on toning and flexibility.

Joseph Pilates, a German athlete who struggled with health problems created Pilates based on his belief that a strong core was the key to health and vitality. Pilates focuses on building strength in the deep muscles of your body's core.

Yogilates or yogalates is a natural blend of yoga poses and Pilates’ focus on a strong core.

Who Would Benefit from Yogalates?

The truth is that just about anyone can benefit from a yogalates program. The key is finding an instructor that works well for you. If you want to experience the benefits of yoga while also the amazing posture and strong core muscles that Pilates helps develop then it’s a good program to consider. It will also help you tone your muscles; improve your posture and burn calories and fat.

Curso de Instructor de Pilates
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Is There Any Special Equipment or Skill Required?

While traditional Pilates classes do require special equipment, a yogalates class is often performed on a simple yoga mat. There’s no special equipment required. You can find yogalates classes at yoga studios, Pilates studios and at most gyms and fitness centers. Your local community center may even have a class you can take.

What to Expect from a Yogalates Workout

Most yogalates classes are about sixty to ninety minutes long. Some studios are heated which facilitates blood flow and calorie burning. Most often you’ll have soothing music in the background while your instructor guides you through progressively challenging exercises and poses.

If you’re already familiar with yoga poses like downward dog you’ll have a head start but don’t feel like that is necessary. Most yoga studios and gyms offer beginner yoga and yogalates classes. They welcome new students and will work with you to learn proper form. If you’re unsure, consider checking out some DVDs or online videos which demonstrate the method, and see if it is something you would like to try before signing up for a class.

Yogalates Videos:
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