We are here to give you the rundown about pilates for weight loss. Does Pilates help you lose weight? That is a question asked very frequently by students and patients who have that goal.

But what happens is that the instructors are not sure about that question, and doubts arise from the professionals at the time of answering whether the Pilates method has a considerable energy expenditure.

In that text, we will understand, a little more, how Pilates can burn fat, debunking all the myths about that claim. Besides, we will give tips to carry out a class with that objective and some exercises.

Do you want to know if Pilates loses weight? Read on!

Common Beliefs & Myths about Pilates

  • Pilates does lose weight, yes! It is the main objective of the method.

  • Pilates strengthens muscles and can aid in weight loss.

  • Pilates will define me.

  • Pilates is indicated for obese.

  • Pilates replaces bodybuilding

  • Pilates can be an ally to functional training.

Breaking Down the Myths

“Pilates does lose weight, yes! It is the main objective of the method.”


The Pilates for weight loss method is a physical activity that works the body as a whole; thus, it is a complete activity with the objective of conscious control of all movements and to provide the balance of the body’s forces.

The method is based on six principles for performing the exercises: breathing, concentration, precision, control, and fluidity. With regular practice, Pilates promotes stretching and, consequently, increased flexibility of the body. It also strengthens the joints.

That is the main objective of the method, it is not an activity for weight loss, so if a student seeks your Pilates study for that purpose, you must explain that this is not the method’s objective, but Pilates can help in the thinning.

Let’s go to the next statement:

“Pilates strengthens muscles and can HELP in weight loss.”


As stated above, Pilates is not an activity to lose weight, but it can help. We must remember that Pilates’ practice generates various benefits, which can be considered beneficial consequences, but that is not why they are less critical.

All exercises aim to strengthen the abdomen’s deep stabilizing muscles, promote mobility for the joints, and re-educate movement. Thus, improved body awareness, improved posture, and healthy muscles (stretched and toned).

Pilates’ movements provide stretching and strengthening that may be simple but act on the body in an integrated and individualized way.

Also, the practice of the method stimulates the body. It improves its functionality, accelerating the metabolism, which leads to a balance of the whole body and weight loss.

But when your student practices only Pilates for weight loss, the result may not be expected because the method does not generate a fat loss; according to research, a Pilates class with soon 1 hour can lose 200 to 400 calories on the exercises performed.

It is vital to help your student looking for weight loss, that he has a healthy and balanced diet, with a professional’s guidance. You advise your student to practice physical exercises with high caloric expenditure, together with Pilates.

There is scientific proof! According to an article published by the American researcher Hallsworthk, resistance exercises, such as Pilates, can reduce 13% of liver fat for approximately eight weeks.

The instructor must explain to your student that Pilates can lose weight, with the burning of calories, due to the exercises. What happens then is that Pilates’ benefits help in weight loss and, significantly, improve the quality of life.

We still have students who think that just by practicing the method, they can make a miracle, so we go to our next statement.

 “Pilates will define me.”


As mentioned above, Pilates’ practice also generates, along with all the other benefits, Pilates for weight loss, since it is a physical activity that increases caloric expenditure.

But many students believe that, like the first statement, Pilates can generate muscle definition and other exercises such as bodybuilding.

It is necessary to explain to the students who come with this thought that they can undergo some physical changes over time with practice, coming from the strengthening of the muscles of the legs and arms, also of the waist and buttocks.

Pilates for slimming and toning the body can help your student stay active, mainly, which improves body posture and improves flexibility; thus, they will have a more harmonious body.

But we always remember that each body is unique. That is, each person has a different answer. We cannot affirm that Pilates will define the body’s muscles since everything depends on various external factors such as diet, lifestyle, and the body’s responses.

 “Pilates is indicated for obese.”


We have already seen that the Pilates for weight-loss method, along with all the other benefits. But, after explaining that the method’s objective is not to lose weight, many people may question, since Pilates is one of the main activities indicated for the obese. Let’s now explain why.

We know that obesity is a public health problem associated with dysfunctions such as hypertension, diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, and cardiovascular diseases, so we can understand why the treatment should not only be in losing weight.

Below we remove parts of a text from a collaborator of the Pilates Blog, Angeles Rayes, ¨Pilates for obese: the effectiveness of the scientifically proven method ¨, where she made a scientific article to analyze this matter.

¨Physical activity programs are indicated as a form of treatment for obesity and overweight. Still, the existing therapy programs present various difficulties, such as joint overload, the monotony of the process, and a low adherence level. Therefore, Pilates for obese is much indicated, it no longer has these difficulties.

Pilates, created by Joseph Hubertus Pilates, is a method that presents a great diversity of movements, with exercises that respect joint mobility, many of them in the supine position and sitting, thus minimizing joint overloads and, they are also exercises that reach up to The depletion.

With that vision arose the interest in applying the Pilates method for obese and for all overweight people who were looking to lose weight and improve their quality of life, and who had problems starting with physical activities due to complaints such as pain in the joints of the knees, ankles, and hips; monotonous exercise modes, such as walking, biking, or strenuous exercise.

Research says that the effectiveness of the method for obese patients was proven. The conclusion was that there was an expressive reduction in fat mass, waist and hip circumference, and increased lean mass in the group.

We can conclude that we can perform Pilates for weight loss in different ways, even though it is not its primary objective. But some people believe that our next statement is true. Confers!

“Pilates replaces bodybuilding”


There is much doubt about that statement, many people question whether Pilates loses more weight than bodybuilding and vice versa.

But, in truth, what people do not imagine is that: both are physical activities that move the muscles of the body, thus, both are effective in losing weight, both are completed and are not replaced by each other.

The great difference between the two activities begins with the fact that the bodybuilding works with the objective of increasing muscle mass, and Pilates provides control and balance of movements, favoring motor coordination and increasing strength.

Thus, during the practice of bodybuilding the muscle groups are worked, located superficially with the aim of increasing strength or muscular endurance, it is an exercise indicated to students who seek quick results since the increase of muscle mass in a short time.

The Pilates method, as already mentioned, has different objectives, such as muscle rebalancing, improving posture and muscle definition without hypertrophy and without joint overload. Still the method uses springs or body weight and does not hypertrophy the muscles.

But we have to remember that Pilates results are slower, because for your student to execute the exercises a greater concentration is required, since the movements are more complex than the bodybuilding.

Taking into account all these details, it is a good idea to opt for the practice of bodybuilding and Pilates together, the two can complement each other and generate more benefits than imagined. But the ideal is to alternate the practice of activities.

In conclusion, who has the goal of losing weight, gaining muscle mass and not gaining weight, the recommendation is to practice both activities.

But we still have one last statement that may seem like a joke, but she manages to combine the benefits of bodybuilding and Pilates in a single class. Do you want to know how? Keep reading!

“Pilates can be an ally to functional training”


Functional training is a type of training considered contemporary. Created in the USA, it arrived in Brazil only in the 90’s. This technique consists of transferring exercises for your student’s daily life activities.

Functional training uses easily logistical equipment or simply the body itself, different from traditional strength and muscular endurance training.

In addition to offering several benefits, such as increased proprioception, strength, muscular endurance, improved flexibility, motor coordination, balance, cardiovascular conditioning, and weight loss.

The functional technique is based on the stimulation of the human body to improve all the qualities of the musculoskeletal system as well as the independent systems. It improves all capacities and systems with the success of its application in rehabilitation, the concept began to be used in the development of programs to improve athletic performance and physical conditioning to reduce injuries.

Functional movements are a universal motor recruitment pattern, a wave of contraction is performed, from the center to the limb, they are also compound movements, that is, they work multiple joints. They are natural, effective and efficient locomotor movements of the organism and of extreme objectives.

The main objective of Pilates classes associated with functional training is to individualize the orientation of the exercises through kinesiological-functional assessment and posture, taking into account the activities of daily and professional life of the patient.

Combine this technique with the method after various benefits to your students, that is because it is an optimal way to prevent injuries and at the same time increase the performance of the student, and guarantee the result expected by him.