Are Ergonomic Chairs Really Helpful?
A revolutionary piece of office furniture, an ergonomic chair is one of the most sought-after pieces every office and home office must have. If you sit for an average of five to eight hours a day working, getting a seating solution that will support your spine alignment and give you comfort is essential. Since working from home has become the norm, having ergonomic furniture at home is not a luxury anymore but a necessity.
But does an ergonomic chair work? Before buying office furniture online or in-store, try to understand what real ergonomic furniture really is, how it works, and if it's truly effective in protecting our spine health.
What is Ergonomics, and Why is it Important?
Ergonomics is the application of biotechnology to promote spine and posture support during rest or activity. While there is no one-size-fits-all model to support everyone's needs, ergonomic chairs are made to adjust and fit individual posture requirements. So why is it important? If you want to support proper posture and spine health, you will need the help of ergonomics.
Aside from the materials, build, and style, ergonomics is one of the first factors to consider when designing and creating home and office furniture. While it's easy to throw the word "ergonomics" around, we are here to discuss what it is and how it achieves the goal of protecting your health.
What is an Ergonomic Chair?
Quality ergonomic office chairs are products of biotechnology used to ensure a good fit between the seat features and your body. These include the shape of your spine, the comfort of your arms, and seat height.
Note: Ergonomics is not limited to office chairs. You can also find ergonomically designed recliners and office tables.
Office chairs are considered ergonomic when they present proper lumbar support and adjustable seat height and depth. These properties can be customised to fit your needs. Some ergonomic chairs come with various features that further improve body support and comfort, including:
- Contoured lumbar support
- Adjustable chair height
- Adjustable seat pan
- An adjustable headrest
- Adjustable tilt and tilt lock
- Casters for easy mobilisation
An ergonomic office chair may come with an upholstered backrest with cushions that follow the natural shape of the back or mesh material that allows proper airflow while contouring your body. The cushioned seat provides adequate support to prevent your lower back from straining. Some ergonomic seats offer a tilting mechanism to adjust the chair support based on your body position. The adjustable height will help ensure that your feet land flat on the floor while your knees are bent 90 degrees to prevent straining and discomfort.
To calculate the proper chair height, stand in front of the chair to ensure your knees are the same height as the seat. When buying office furniture online, measure the length between your toes and the top of your kneecaps.
Benefits of an Ergonomic Chair
An Ergonomic Chair Provides Posture Support
The main benefit of having an ergonomic chair is that it supports proper posture when sitting. When we talk about good body posture, we mean that the natural S shape of the spine is supported when sitting. Sitting on an ergonomic chair prevents you from slouching and straining your spine, leading to bad posture. Its adjustable height and depth help ensure that you remain in a comfortable position, especially when sitting for hours.
An Ergonomic Chair Helps Reduce Hip Pressure
Ergonomic chairs come with properly cushioned seats, hip padding, and contours to support your hips when sitting. With a traditional chair, your lower back and hips receive the most pressure, causing them to strain and feel weak after hours of sitting.
An Ergonomic Chair Helps Relieve Back Pain
It might be a little uncomfortable to sit for hours, especially when suffering from back pain. The continuous strain may affect your posture or cause even more severe back injuries. If you've been going through pains caused by improper posture, it's time to rethink your office chair. More so, ergonomic office chairs have taller backrests than regular chairs.
An Ergonomic Chair Reduces the Risks of Neck Problems
Lack of proper neck support when sitting may cause stiffness and neck injuries like spondylosis. An ergonomic office chair with a headrest can support your neck and shoulder area when seated for an extended period.
An Ergonomic Chair Promotes Proper Blood Circulation
An ergonomic chair's reclining feature can help improve your blood flow, especially on your lower body, which is prone to numbing and swelling when sitting.
An Ergonomic Chair Helps Boost Productivity
When you feel safer and more comfortable at work, you can focus better on your tasks. Instead of bearing your back pain while working, you can spend more of your energy concentrating and getting things done more efficiently.
So does an ergonomic chair work? The answer is yes.
Compared to walking and doing other tasks, sitting requires less effort, but this lack of mobility produces pressure on some parts of our bodies that hold all the weight while other parts are relaxed. Some may overlook the importance of a chair, but for others who spend most of their time working in front of the computer or those suffering from back problems, receiving proper lumbar support is crucial.
An ergonomic chair is undoubtedly a leap towards a safer and more comfortable work setup. However, an ergonomic chair, by itself, will not fix your body posture. It must be accompanied by other factors like the proper width and height of your office table and the placement of your computer screen. When planning an efficient remote work setup, especially if working full-time, consider investing in the right office furniture pieces and follow the guidelines to set up a practical workstation.