Finding the Perfect Ergonomic Chair: A Comprehensive Guide
Ergonomic offices have started to become the norm these days, healthier offices designed to promote a more active work lifestyle to increase employee productivity and improve individual health and wellbeing.
An ergonomic office is characterized by different elements—comfortable seating that protects the back and the body, adjustable height desk that allows constant movement throughout the day, as well as ergonomic accessories that enable users of the space to have everything they need to work within reach. Ergonomic chair, standing desk, monitor arms—these are some of the top elements you need if you are converting your office into an ergonomic space.
In this blog post, we’ll focus on the ergonomic chair, one of the fundamental elements found in any ergo space. Ergonomic chair. You might ask, isn’t this just an office chair? True. But what differentiates an ergonomic chair is the way it is designed to fully support, protect, and keep your body in its natural position every time you are seated, not only creating comfortable seating but also keeping your body in good health.
Ergonomic Chair vs. Average Office Chair
Why is comfortable seating so important? And why should you choose an ergonomic chair and not just your typical, run-of-the-mill office chair? The answer lies in the benefits that the former provides.
An office chair is designed with generic practical features, but it may not have the sufficient support you need to stay comfortable throughout the day. In contrast, an ergonomic chair is equipped with a lot of adjustment features that allow you to customize not only the height of the chair but also the position of the lumbar support, the angle of the recline, the height of the headrest, and the position of the seat, among others. All these adjustment features ensure comfortable seating while also offering many other benefits, such as the following:
- It supports the natural curve and shape of the spine, preventing back pain and potential spinal problem
- It prevents the development of bad posture and the resulting long-term risks it poses
- In effect, an ergonomic chair enables its user to focus more on his tasks and to be more productive at work
If you are converting your office into an ergonomic space for either comfortable seating or productivity purposes, make it a point to check the office chair that you are using—it might be the best time to convert and replace it with an ergonomic chair.
Guide to Finding the Right Ergonomic Chair
If you’re ready to make the switch from a regular office chair to an ergonomic chair, there are different things you must consider in order to find the right chair for you and create comfortable seating in your space. Check out the following:
Arguably one of the most significant benefits of an ergonomic chair is to provide support for your back, whether you are focused at work or having some break and rest in your workstation. A chair’s back support will determine whether you can enjoy comfortable seating and a space conducive for being productive, so make sure you find one with a reliable back support.
Find an ergonomic chair with a lumbar cushion that can keep the natural shape of your back. Some chairs have a lumbar support that you can move up or down, in or out, to customize the way your back is supported. Find the one that is best for you.
Lumbar Adjustability Features
Apart from the lumbar support, also pay attention to the adjustability features of the back support in your office chair. Some of the helpful features you can look into are the following:
- Recline angle. This pertains to the angle by which the back support of your ergonomic chair can recline, including the number of lockable recline points. The wider the range and the more the number of the lockable points, the better for you, as this would mean more options for your sitting position, which is then translated to more comfortable seating.
- Recline tension. This pertains to the resistance the back support offers as you lean and recline on your ergonomic chair. The more the tension, the firmer the back feels. The less the tension, the softer it feels. Depending on your comfort level and the activity you are doing, you can adjust the tension to give your back firm support or a more comfortable, more relaxed feel.
The right back support in your ergonomic chair is crucial not only for comfortable seating but also for keeping your posture correct, for reducing back fatigue, and for preventing spinal-related problems. So, make sure to choose an ergonomic chair with sufficient adjustability in its back support.
Armrest and Headrest
As many as there are different types of ergonomic chair, the armrest and the headrest also have a wide variety of features, from the simplest to the more complex ones.
Armrest. The basic armrest feature is height adjustability, but you can find 4D armrests that do not only move vertically but also horizontally—forward or backward, sideways, in or out. A 4D armrest can be adjusted to accommodate different body types, as well as to give you more space and mobility as needed to ensure comfortable seating. Check if this is something that you will need in your ergonomic chair.
Headrest. Although some adjustable chairs don’t have this, an office chair with a headrest is a preferred choice because of the additional support it provides to the neck, head, shoulders, and upper back, all of which are crucial in creating comfortable seating especially during long hours at work. Headrest adjustability features usually include the basic height adjustment, but one other neat feature you might be interested in is the design of the headrest for forward or backward tilting, allowing it to provide customized support to users.
When it comes to the fabric of your ergonomic chair, you have two major options: mesh or leather.
A mesh office chair offers the advantage of being light and breathable, making it a perfect choice in warm office environments. It allows air to pass through, allowing heat from your body to escape and, in the process, keeping you warm. It makes for a comfortable seating even in summer. Apart from being breathable, mesh chairs are also lightweight and minimalist in design. That means they are more compact, easier to move around in your space, as well as easier to put in storage.
A leather ergonomic chair, on the other hand, provides the advantage of being sturdy, as well as being premium in design—no wonder most executive chairs are made of leather material. Leather adds elegance and a look of professionalism in any space. The material is also easy to clean and maintain, although not necessarily easy to restore in case it gets damaged. It doesn’t trap as much heat as a mesh office chair does, but the durability and long-lastingness of leather make up for this.
In your search for a new ergonomic chair, find the right balance between premium look and comfortable seating, durability and handiness.
Seat Support and Adjustability
This generally pertains to the material the seat is made of and the capability of the seat for adjustment. When it comes to the seat cushion, you’ll find different types of foam being used, and among the most reliable is memory foam. In your search, look for a seat cushion that has the right balance of softness and rigidity—too hard and it will not be comfortable, but too soft and it may not offer enough support. Balance is the key.
One seat feature of the ergonomic chair that you might want to check out is the forward and backward adjustment. It keeps your pelvis in a natural position, all while helping you achieve the right balance when you tilt the back support. Remember those sensations of falling backwards when you suddenly lean on your chair and it tilts too much, lifting your feet off the ground? The right seat base adjustment will prevent that from happening, ensuring comfortable seating no matter what position you’re in.
Once you’ve gone through all of these features and determined which features you need from your office chair, it’s time to consider finding the right one. The best ergonomic chairs do not necessarily need to have all the ergonomic seating solutions and all of these features available—you just need to find the one with the features that will work for you best, those that can help create a comfortable seating in your space.
Consider the chair features that you need, find an ergonomic chair that has the matching features and the right price that matches your budget, and don’t forget to check the warranty. Depending on the chair, the average warranty coverage is between 1-2 years.
Other factors you might want to check are the ease of installation (which may be crucial for those who do not have technical skills and knowledge in chair assembly) as well as the customer reviews you will find online. Checking all of these will help you find the right matching ergonomic chair for you and your space.
MotionGrey is a Canadian standing desk company that specializes in ergonomic furniture. We supply and install only the best quality standing desks and ergonomic chairs in the country. We offer free shipping within Canada and the US.
What made you switch to standing desks? Our products are designed with wellness as the focal point. From our electric standing desks to our office and gaming chairs, we deliver best value by putting your health, safety, and comfort as top priority. Boost your creativity and level up work performance. We want you to create great outcomes so we’re providing you only the best tools to make them possible.
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