Pilates Band vs Resistance Band

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Wondering how Pilates bands differ from resistance bands? Many people think that the Pilates band and resistance band are different from each other, but that’s not entirely true. We will clear out your confusion, so you can choose the right band for your exercises.

A Pilates band is a type of resistance band that adds resistance to your exercises and can be used as a weight alternative. Resistance bands come in different varieties with handles, anchors, loops, etc. For Pilates, loopless, latex-free, stretchy resistance bands are the best. 

If you’re new to Pilates, it’s important to understand how bands benefit you while performing Pilates, so you can get the best results from your workouts.

Moreover, choosing the right resistance band can be hard, but we have reviewed some of the best. So, read further to learn more about Pilates bands and resistance bands!

Pilates Band vs Resistance Band – Is There Any Difference?

The Pilates band and resistance band are almost the same. The Pilates band is really one of the many types of resistance bands available, and they all add more challenge to your exercise.

There are tons of resistance bands with different styles, shapes and resistance levels. Some are like a band with both ends attached while some have open ends.

Usually, resistance bands with open ends are used for Pilates due to the nature of Pilates exercises. However, that’s not to say other types of bands aren’t useful, and I often incorporate them into workouts to add variety and challenge.

It is important to choose the right resistance band for your exercise so that you can get the most out of it. 

Pilates Band

Pilate bands are usually latex-free with no handles or loops. It is a single strand of a resistance band with both ends open so you can hold both the ends in your hands and stretch it as much as you want. 

These bands are good for Pilates because you can stretch them to a large extent.

Resistance bands with both ends attached have less stretch and flexibility, but are still useful in come workouts as I’ll demonstrate later.

If you’re wondering how to use one check out my 25 minute Pilates band training video.

Resistance Band

Resistance bands are large elastic bands that are a great alternative to weight training programs. Using resistance bands in your exercise is a cheaper and more versatile way to train your body whatever your fitness levels.

You can increase your mobility, muscle strength, and flexibility by adding resistance bands to your exercise and, like weights, you can start with a medium band and work your way up to a stronger version as you gain strength.

I find they’re a brilliant way to add additional challenge to leg moves. It’s great to add some additional strength training (although my clients may not agree, they often groan when they see me pull out a band for the session!)

Let’s see if you have the same reaction, if you already have one, give this resistance band training video a try.

Remember that Pilates is a set of exercises using different apparatus and mats to improve your flexibility, posture, mental health, core strength, and balance. Adding a resistance band to Pilates exercise enhances the effects of the exercises and is a great way to challenge yourself during a routine. 

All bands come in different difficulty levels such as easy, medium, and hard. As a beginner, you can go for easy or medium resistance and go up to hard levels to challenge your body.  Be sure to pick the right resistance level, you want it to add challenge, not prevent you from completing the workout.

Uses of Pilates Bands

I keep mentioning bands add challenge to your workout, but what do I mean by that?  And are there any other advantages of using a band while doing Pilates exercises?  Let’s find out!

Increased Challenge

Pilates Band WeightDifficulty LevelIdeal For
3 lbsUltra LightBeginners and Rehab
7 lbsVery LightLevel 2 for Beginners and Rehab
12 lbsLight Intermediates 
18 lbsMediumLevel 2 for Intermediates
25 lbsHardLevel 3 for Intermediates
40 lbsVery HardVery Fit Users (Advanced)
55 lbsUltra HardExtremely Fit Users

Using the same equipment every day will make your body get used to the exercises. Your muscles will stop getting affected after some time. Therefore, you have to add some resistance and increase the level of resistance with time. This is where the addition of a resistance band comes in handy.

Moreover, you can perform Pilates exercises at home after studio exercises. As a personal trainer I will often suggest homework to my clients, to help build on the work we do in our class.  To help make the homework a more effective workout I’ll often suggest the use of the correct difficulty (for my client) band  along with suitable exercises to make the most of it.

Stay Fit While Travelling

Resistance bands are highly portable, and you can carry them anywhere. A lot of people pack them as a substitution for weights as you can use them for moves such as bicep curls. 

When travelling, you can use a Pilates band and imitate the exercises performed by a Pilates machine, meaning you don’t have to skip your exercises while away from home. 

More Support for the Body

Pilate bands make exercises more achievable by adding support to your body. The purpose of a Pilates band isn’t just to add resistance to your exercises, adding support is one of the additional benefits. 

If you are a beginner, using a Pilates band will help you balance your body in the beginning. In fact people who have been to see a physical therapist are due to injuries are often advised to perform Pilates with a band as part of the recovery process.

Fewer Chances of an Injury

Adding weights to your exercises gains you a lot of muscle strength. However, there are many risks involved when you are weight training, especially for beginners. 

Using a Pilates band is better in regard to the risk of injuries. In fact, Pilates bands make exercises easier instead of weights, yet still add challenge, and you don’t have to fear getting hurt while performing the exercises.

This also adds a sense of confidence and you can perform Pilates freely.

Versatility

Resistance bands are versatile in that not only can they be used in a wide range of moves but you can also increase the level of resistance by using different bands.

Although you could use more than one band, I would highly recommend using a stronger band if you’re finding the low resistance beginner band is no longer challenging you.

There are endless possibilities with a resistance band that can make mat exercises more fun and engaging.

Best Resistance Bands for Pilates

Want to know which Pilates bands are the best to perform Pilates? If yes, you are in the right place. You can go for a full body Pilates workout using a Pilates band or perform some favorite exercises only. So, let’s check out some of our favorite Pilates bands!

Meglio Pilates Band 

Meglio makes amazing resistance bands. You can get Meglio Resistance Bands for Pilates (on Amazon) at a reasonable price. They are latex-free, strong, and stretchy. They come in different colors and are perfect for performing at-home Pilates exercises. 

Friendship Figure 8 Fitness Resistance Band

Figure 8 Resistance Band from Friendship (on Amazon) makes Pilates exercises easier. They have a handle on both sides so you can easily hold the handles or put them on your foot arch. It provides a no-slip exercise experience. 

WSAKOUE Resistance Band Set

If you want a more professional resistance set for at-home Pilates, get this WSAKOUE Resistance Band Set (on Amazon). It comes with handles, resistance loops, ankle straps, and a carry bag. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I Use Resistance Bands in Pilates?

Using resistance bands in Pilates is a lot more common than you think. It is a great way to make Pilates more challenging to get maximum muscle strength, flexibility, and mobility. It is less risky and better for beginners to use resistance bands instead of weights in Pilates.

How to Choose a Pilates Resistance Band?

To perform Pilates exercises, the resistance bands should come in different levels of resistance, so anyone can go from easy to hard levels. Moreover, the simpler the bands, the easier it would be to perform Pilates exercises.

What are the Best Pilates Band Exercises?

Some of the best exercises to perform with Pilates bands are:

  • Inner Thigh
  • Straight Side Leg Lift
  • Kneeling Extended Leg and Straight Leg Lift
  • Squat and Overhead
  • Leg Circle
  • Lunges 
  • Leg Extension
  • Standing Adduction

Final Thoughts

Hopefully with the help of our article you know that resistance band is another name for Pilates band and what sort of benefits you get from using it! Adding a resistance band to your Pilates routine will give you the same muscle activity like weight training, but it offers no risk of injuries like weight training. Stay fit!

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