What Are Ergonomic Chairs? Detailed Explanation + Features

what are ergonomic chairs

Every week, many of us work on the computer for up to 30 hours. Given the significant health risks connected with extended sitting, this might be a reason for alarm.

Extended sitting can bring about numerous health issues which include straining your muscles, shoulders, arms, and lower back to experiencing unending aches in your spine.

Sitting in proper posture can assist to lessen the risk of repetitive strain injuries caused by sitting for lengthy periods. A high-quality ergonomic chair will guarantee that you sit appropriately and comfortably without putting any area of your body under stress.

But what are ergonomic chairs and how do they differ from regular chairs? Find out in the next paragraphs.

Ergonomic Explained

Ergonomics is a science, also known vernacularly as “human factors engineering,” that is concerned with the design of products, systems, and environments to be used by people.

It involves how objects can be engineered or designed to suit the human body’s unique shape and size. An ergonomic chair is one example of an ergonomic product. Ergonomic chairs are designed to suit the human shape and size and to reduce the risk of repetitive strain injuries.

Ergonomic chairs usually have features such as adjustable backrests, adjustable armrests, adjustable seat height, adjustable seat depth, etc. that allow the user to adjust the chair to suit his or her body shape and size.

What Makes A Chair Ergonomic 

An ergonomic product, such as a chair, has a variety of features that make it more comfortable to use. The Chair has a soft, ergonomic design that is comfortable to use for long periods. 

Most modern office chairs, as well as study chairs, are ergonomically designed. Some of the features an ergonomic chair offers users are adjustable armrests, adjustable lumbar support, adjustable headrest, adjustable seat height, adjustable seat depth, adjustable seat width, and adjustable backrest height.

Although these features can improve your sitting conditions, you still have to learn how to sit correctly before you can reap the benefits of an ergonomic office chair. The following are some of the most common mistakes people make when sitting in an office chair.

  • Sitting too far forward. 
  • Sitting too close to the desk. 
  • Sitting too high. 
  • Sitting too low.

A good-quality ergonomic chair is adjustable, which allows the user to customize the chair to fit his or her needs. Additionally, a good-quality ergonomic chair should also be comfortable, which means that the chair should have a soft, padded seat and back.

Features such as adjustabilities are very important in chairs, especially if the chair will be used by multiple people at a time. An adjustable chair will allow the user to adjust the chair to his or her height and size.

Features of Ergonomic Chairs

1. Armrests

Armrests are meant to relieve upper-body stress and allow the shoulders to relax. When sitting in an upright position, armrests are extremely useful. When working on a computer, however, armrests should not be utilized because they restrict arm movement, thereby straining the forearm muscles.

Most ergonomic office chairs include adjustable armrests that may be flipped down when not in use or up when needed.

2. Lumbar Support

Lumbar support simply means the support provided to your lower body and spine. Good-quality ergonomic chairs always come with well-designed backrest lumbar support.  It is a vital feature of ergonomic chairs which helps to provide adequate support and comfort.

The backrest of ergonomic chairs usually comes in an ‘S’ shape which is similar to the natural shape of the human spine. This helps to prevent back pain, and slumping, and reduces tension on the spine and the lumbar.

Aside from that, the backrests are also adjustable. This gives users the freedom to customize the chair’s lumbar support and curve to fit their heights and the natural curve of their back for maximum comfort and support.

3. Headrest

A well-designed and sufficiently padded headrest is another common feature of ergonomic chairs. This helps to provide maximum support to the head and upper neck and reduce stress on the shoulders and torso. 

Like most features of ergonomic chairs, the headrests are mostly adjustable, which allows the users to customize them to their height preference.

4. Seat Height

Ergonomic chairs are so designed to make provision for different height requirements. This simply means that they can be adjusted to suit different height options. 

An excellent seat height allows you to rest your feet flat on the floor without straining your ankles. The engineering behind ergonomic chairs usually puts this into consideration. 

It also considers the fact that most office desks are not adjustable, which is why the chairs come with an adjustable seat height feature. What’s more, the general sitting heights for most people are between 16” to 21” from floor level. With an ergonomic chair with seat height function, you should be able to twerk the chair around this general height demand.

5. Seat Depth and Width

The ideal seat depth gives considerable space of about 2 to 4 inches between the edge of the seat and the back of your knees. Ergonomic chairs are designed for this standard. This prevents you from not sitting too far forward. 

Sitting too far forward is one of the common mistakes we make when sitting on an office chair. This exact unnecessary pressure at the back of the knees.

6. Backrest Recline

Another important feature of ergonomic chairs is the backrest recline. What’s great about this feature is that allows users to sit in a better and proper posture. This is made possible because of the adjustability of the backrest, which allows users to adjust the backrest to a position that supports their natural back shape.

The backrest recline feature helps to reduce the weight on the torso and minimize the stress on the spinal cord and muscles.

7. Swivel

Ergonomic chairs feature well-designed and sturdy swivels that aid mobility within or around your working space. The essence of the swivel is to make movement easier and hassle-free within working space or around the office. 

8. Tilt

Good-quality ergonomic chairs also come with a tilt feature, which is good for proper positioning of the pelvis. People who sit always for a long time suffer a lot from posture problems such as Anterior pelvic tilt.

With the tilt feature, you can align the seat to keep the pelvis in a neutral position. A correct sitting position will allow about 80-degree angles at the ankles, knees, and hips.

9. Wheels

Ergonomic chairs come with either soft rubber wheels or metal wheels. The soft wheels are suitable for hard surfaces such as tiles and concrete. This ensures you move swiftly and easily across your office floor with little to no noise.

On the other hand, hards wheels work better on carpeted floors for easier and noiseless movement across your office floor.

10. Materials

Good-quality ergonomic chairs are designed with high-quality, comfortable materials. The material used in the making of most ergonomic office chairs is usually breathable, which allows for proper ventilation. 

In addition, the seat, armrests, and headrest are also well-padded with foam to provide maximum comfort. The base is either made out of durable aluminum or steel metals for adequate support. 

But keep in mind that, the materials employed in the making will largely determine the cost. Premium-quality ergonomic chairs are made with a durable leather or velvet materials. But there are still some good quality and budget-friendly ergonomic chairs that offer great support, comfort, and durability.

Recommended Read: Tips To Buy The Right Luxury Furniture Online


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