Pilates-yoga fusion classes combine the mind-clearing benefits of yoga and the toning power of Pilates.
“What I like most about a Pilates-yoga fusion workout is that it burns more calories than my gentle yoga class, strengthens the body and helps with flexibility,” says Maureen “Mo” Dwyer, a fitness instructor at Cancer Wellness at Piedmont. “Pilates-yoga fusion is a great workout to build muscle and stamina, and it teaches focus and relaxation.”
Dwyer’s classes begin with muscle-toning Pilates and end with yoga, stretching and meditation.
“The yoga part of the workout offers more stretching and relaxation of muscles,” she explains. “We then practice six minutes of meditation at the end of this class. Participants are offered a lavender eye pillow, blanket, neck pillow and bolster to relax.”
Health benefits of Pilates-yoga fusion
Combining yoga and Pilates is a natural fit because “both yoga and Pilates require us to focus on the breath, precise movements, proper alignment and our core muscles as we flow through the workout,” she says.
The mind-body benefits of fusion workouts include:
Stronger connection with your body
“Pilates core exercises are especially important to regain abdominal strength in individuals who have had a TRAM [transverse rectus abdominus] flap breast reconstruction procedure,” explains Dwyer.
Pilates-yoga fusion for all fitness levels
“Pilates-yoga fusion is a medium-intensity workout and is a great option for someone who is new to Pilates, yoga or both practices,” explains Dwyer. “I always encourage participants to work at their own pace.”
Like traditional classes, Pilates-yoga fusion classes can be modified depending on your energy level and ability. Modifications include:
A yoga block, small pillow or blanket to support your neck
Wall or chair support for leg circles
“It’s important to listen to your body and stop when needed,” she adds.
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