How to Pick the Best Ergonomic Office Chair
Posted on August 25 2017
Do you pay attention enough to your office chair? On an average day, an adult working at the office sits around 7h/day. If that person works for, let's say 30 years, (s)he will spend 46,200 hours sitting down (5.2 years approximately). Crazy numbers, right? Now think again, if you are going to sit for around 5 full years, shouldn't you, at least, put as much thought when choosing a good chair as you do when buying your mattress or your car?
Numbers here don't lie. If you didn't think about them before, and you just realized what a huge amount of time you spend with your derrière glued to a chair, this how-to guide will help you now. It is time to invest in your office chair! Let's get started!
HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR CHAIR
Before we jump to check the main characteristics that a chair should have, you should make sure you know the usage that you will give to your future new chair. We list below 3 possible –and common, situations/scenarios to take into account:
- Home vs Office: unless you work remote from home, office chairs at home will be less used than office chairs at work. If you are looking for a chair for your home, style can be your priority over comfort. For home, we will recommend leather or synthetic (PU) leather chairs like the High Back Leather Executive Chair. This type of chairs are elegant and will add a lot of personality and style to the room. On the other hand, if you are looking for a chair to use at the office, it is important to prioritize on the comfort, but don't worry, with the latest chairs on the market, you won't sacrifice on the style either.
- Sit for long time vs. Sit for a short time: they key is breathability. If you plan to sit for hours, choose a chair that is made with a fabric that lets the air flow, like this Round Mid-Back Office Chair with mesh fabric, as it will dissipate the body heat. On the other hand, if you don't plan to sit for a long time, you can choose less breathable fabrics, like synthetic leather for instance.
- Recreational vs. Work/study: chairs used for recreational reasons, known as gaming chairs, and are different from regular office or study chairs in terms of their aesthetics. Since the gamers' world is a whole new area of expertise when referring to chairs, we will keep it simple here and will talk about it in depth on a different post very soon. Just keep in mind that if you are looking for a gaming chair to play computer games, your needs might be different than when looking for an office chair to work or study.
Now that you know that the first step to choose a chair is to know where and how you will use it, we can keep going. How do I know when a chair is good or not? There are different things to take into account, and Sheldon Cooper knows them (almost) all! You can check as he describes - in his own unique way, why Penny's chair is a good chair in this short caption:
MAIN CHARACTERISTICS OF A GOOD OFFICE CHAIR
- Adjustability: the best chair is the one that seems to be created only for you. It has the perfect height, weight, in conclusion, it fits you 100%! In real life, to own this just-made-for-you chair might not be that easy. Lucky we, chairs nowadays are customizable. You can adapt the height, armrests, headrest and tilting degree among the most important features. By adjusting the chair to your body, you will improve your posture and comfort when studying or working.
- Fabric: we talked about this before. The material of the chair is very important as it affects the breathability of the chair, and therefore the comfort. While leather chairs are very elegant, they are not breathable at all and you can easily feel sweaty and uncomfortable, especially during the summer. The best solution is the mesh fabric as it is comfortable and very fresh. This material helps to dissipate the body heat and it is great for sitting for long hours.
- Support: best office chairs always offer lumbar/back support. It is very important to make sure your chair has an ergonomic design that adapts to the curve of the body so we can prevent back strain, which can worsen and become sciatica. As important as lumbar support, it is to have head and neck support. Choosing a chair with (adjustable) headrest will help you to relax the muscles of the neck and shoulders, relieving muscular stress. Check out this fun Mesh Executive Office Chair in Green Color. It has a great adjustable ergonomic design!
- Back height: there are two options, high-back or mid-back chairs. The first one usually comes with a headrest (although is not mandatory) and offers broader support as you can relax the head on the headrest, perfect for people who normally suffer from neck pain. The mid-back chair, as its name indicates has a backrest with a medium-length and don’t have a headrest. Here you have an example of a similar chair with high backrest and with mid backrest. Which one do you like best?
- Base: you can choose a static chair or a rolling one. Office chairs that can roll and swivel 360 degrees offer a wider range of motion, which will be better to move around the desk without the need of standing up or dragging the chair around. If you plan to put your chair on a carpeted surface, make sure that the casters can roll smoothly on rugs.
Remember that in order to choose the most appropriate chair for you, you have to think whether you will use it for long or short hours. Keep in mind that someone working at the office might spend around 7 hours per day sitting down. If you are going to give your chair an office/work use, it is best to prioritize on the comfort and breathability of the chair fabric. The best pick will be a chair that can be adjusted (height, armchairs, headrest), that helps to dissipate the heat and that has an ergonomic design to support your back and improve your posture. If you will not use the chair for long hours, then you can choose style over comfort. Faux leather chairs are modern and sophisticated, and add a lot of chicness to the room.
If you want to browse LANGRIA’s whole chair collection, click here and choose the most appropriate office chair for you using our pieces of advice.
Do you have any different tip to share with other readers when picking your office chair? Let us know by leaving a comment below!