This is a fairly common question. The best way to answer this is to describe the goals of each exercise.
With Pilates, you will be focusing mainly on core strength, body control, and individual muscle toning.
Yoga, on the other hand, focuses on flexibility and broad muscle groups.
Another major difference between the two is that the latter often has a spiritual aspect to it. It’s used as a way to relax, clear the mind, and meditate.
Classes are available in several styles, ranging from gentle movement to more fast-paced movements that leave you sweaty.
Pilates, on the other hand, does not offer a variety of styles.
Typically, these classes are more consistent than yoga classes, and most exercises are performed in a lying position.
Although different styles are not available, you still have different level classes available – from beginner to advanced.
Do I need a yoga mat for Pilates?
You do need a mat for the exercise.
While many people may choose to simply use a yoga mat they already have laying around, it’s a good idea to purchase one that’s specifically made for Pilates.
Pilates mats are usually thicker to create more cushioning and prevent pain to bony areas such as the spine.
Below, we have outlined product details of a best-selling mat of both types. Continue reading to discover the pros and cons of each.
Our Evaluation – Pilates mat vs Yoga Mat
This professional-grade Pilates mat is used in Licensed Training Centers around the world and is praised for its durability and cushioning. It’s extra-thick, measuring 15mm, which is nearly 3/4-inch.
Manufacturer: STOTT Pilates
Verdict: This is a great option if you don’t mind spending a little extra money to invest in a commercial-grade, high-quality product.
Target market: This was intended to be used by anyone who does Pilates, but is also great for anyone who wants to bring some extra comfort to floor exercises or stretches.
Benefits of key features:
- Extra-thick: This extra thickness adds support and protects the spine from hard surfaces.
- Closed-cell, high-density foam construction: This makes the mat extremely durable, able to withstand repeated use, and easy to roll up.
- Smooth surface: The surface is extremely smooth for ease of movement.
Customer Reviews for STOTT Pilates Deluxe Pilates Mat:
“Great cushion and perfect for pilates or working out if you need that extra padding for the wrists and knees. I’ve gotten tons of people commenting on what a great mat it is from my exercise classes.”
“I have bad knees from multiple surgeries and have been looking/trying different mats to make it more comfortable when doing floor exercise, yoga etc – this portable mat has great cushioning.”
“The thickness is really nice, but very disappointed in the quality. The first one that came had dark indentations across the entire mat. I sent it back for a new one, and the second one had the same problem.”
2. Crown Sporting Goods Extra Thick Yoga Mat
This yoga mat is designed for comfort, safety, and durability. Like the product above, this mat also measures 15mm thick, which is almost 3/4-inch. That is considerably thicker than other options on the market.
Manufacturer: Crown Sporting Goods
Target market: This product is great for anyone who practices yoga, no matter whether you’re a beginner or an expert.
Verdict: If you’re looking for an affordable option that’s going to provide you with the comfort you need, this is a great choice.
Even if you don’t practice yoga, it can be used for any type of exercise that involves the floor. Additionally, it can be used as a sleeping pad for camping trips or day care facilities.
Benefits of Key Features:
- Extra-thick: This high-density foam ensures a comfortable workout without any unnecessary strain on your joints.
- Ridged, textured surface: This creates a cooling, moisture-resistant surface, so you don’t have to worry it getting soaked with sweat.
- Non-slip bottom: This is a very important factor in terms of safety. The bottom is designed to grip the floor securely, preventing any accidental slips.
Customer Reviews for Mat Crown Sporting Goods Extra Thick Yoga Mat:
“This mat is just right for floor exercises. I need a surface that is flat and yet yielding and this is perfect. It is only 5/8″ thick but gives me relief from the rock hard floor. Much better than a 2″ foam mattress or other soft mat. This keeps the back firmly in line while making it more comfortable.”
“Nice and thick for my workouts. It’s not the best on carpet because it slides around a bit, but I still love the thickness of it. The thinner ones would make my tailbone hurt when doing ab work. This one is nice and thick, so my tailbone doesn’t hurt.”
“It is very cushy and comfortable on your feet but it tears and stretches when you try to use it. For example, trying to do a warm up downward dog caused it to tear where my toes pushed in a bit. There is no way I can actually use it to do yoga or even stretch properly. It is nice for doing sit ups or roll ups but that is really all you can do with it.”
FAQ and Tips
- If you’re looking to purchase one of the above products, you can do so at a sporting goods store, directly from the manufacturer, or from online markets such as Amazon or eBay.
- Product #1 is available on Amazon for around $70. Product #2 is priced around $25. Neither comes with a warranty.
- Delivery within the United States is typically fairly quick. Most customers report receiving their package within a week.
The Pilates Mat vs Yoga Mat products reviewed have received overall very positive feedback, and we recommend both of them:
- We recommend product STOTT Pilates Mat if you’re looking for relief from joint pain.
- We recommend product Crown Sporting Goods Extra Thick Yoga Mat if you’re looking for a mat to keep you stable and balanced.