Mat Pilates vs. Yoga: Which Is Better?

Yoga is good for you; mat Pilates is good for you. Both focus on the mind-body connection and improving strength and flexibility. But the approach and goals differ slightly. So if you are a little confused about which workout is best for you, we get it, and we’re here to help.

Mat Pilates

Mat Pilates is easy to start in a studio or at home, and while it’s known for being a great core workout, it provides a ton of other health benefits.

No Equipment Necessary

It’s in the name – all you need for mat Pilates is a mat and some instructions to get your full workout in. This is a major bonus because gym equipment can get expensive and take up a ton of space. As you advance in your mat Pilates journey, (which means you’re basically doing the same moves as you would while using a Pilates machine), you may consider investing in a medicine ball, a foam roller, or resistance bands, but they aren’t necessary to reap the benefits of the routine.

Get Low

If you’re on the hunt for a low-impact exercise (one that doesn’t strain your muscles or joints), Pilates may be just the thing. The movements are slow and controlled, and most are performed while lying down, sitting, or standing on a padded mat, which helps take the stress off your joints.

Big and Strong

Don’t let the term “low-impact” fool you; you’ll still feel the burn with mat Pilates. Most moves target your core, but your hip, pelvis, back, booty, and arms will feel it, too.

Flex on ’Em

Mat Pilates doesn’t just strengthen your muscles; it also stretches them, which improves flexibility. And because so many of the moves require lifting an arm or a leg, you’ll improve your balance, too. And because of that strong core we mentioned, you’ll likely see an improvement in your posture as well.

You’ve Got the Time

One of the biggest reasons people say they can’t make it to the gym is a lack of time, and we get it. But the fact we can do Pilates in 10-minute bouts throughout the day means no excuses.


While both yoga and Pilates are considered mindful forms of exercise, yoga tends to take the meditative part to the next level, making it just as good of a workout but for different reasons.

Stress? Never Heard of Her

Yoga sessions typically involve calming music or peaceful silence, encouraging people to look inward and reflect while simultaneously training hard. This combination can do wonders for a stressful mind and body.


Sure, yoga is good for your body, but it’s not uncommon for yoga instructors to encourage you to challenge your mindset and change how you talk to yourself for the better.

The Spice of Life

There are many different kinds of yoga, which is perfect if you’re targeting certain areas of your body or get bored of the same old routine. Switch it up as often or as little as you want to find the yoga that works best for you.

Final Thoughts

Yoga or Pilates? It’s ultimately up to you. Both workouts require minimal equipment and are considered low-impact. If you’re looking for a form of exercise that mimics meditation, we recommend yoga, and if it’s that long, lean look you’re going for, we recommend giving Pilates a shot. If you can’t decide, give them a week each and see which works out best for you! Or keep switching it up – no one ever said you had to commit to just one form of exercise.

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