Pilates was developed by Joseph Pilates in the 1920's in Germany where he was a carpenter and gymnast. He invented Pilates as a rehabilitation program for prisioners of war and injured soldiers then further developed over ensuing decades with a dance/ballet focus.
Pilates classes focus on strength, muscle toning, body control, and flexibility, with the main emphasis being core strength. Pilates is a disciplined practice that when done regularly provides the greatest benefit.
Yoga is a living tradition with origins likely dating back at least 5000 years to the ancient Vedic traditions of India. It is an evolving science of self-inquiry that offers a huge array of philosophies, tools and techniques developed over millennia. Some of these tools include meditation, pranayama, asana, mantra and philosophical study.
Yoga has the potential to work on body, mind and spirit. Classes can range from gentle and nourishing to challenging and sweaty. With all the variety, there is a class and a style for everyone. Yoga is great for reducing stress and allowing for greater relaxation. Once you get into Yoga though, you learn that it is so much more than just a physical practice. It is a philosophy, a passion and a way of life for many of those involved in Yoga. While you may be getting into yoga for the exercise, you may soon find yourself wrapped in the philosophy and spirituality that Yoga brings along with it.