how to choose an office chair

Buying guide: 6 essential features of a good office chair

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You are the owner of an office, myBiz, remember! You have space, some documents, and a few other things. What else now do you need? Isn’t it something where you can put over when you write? Anything else? a chair with everything which makes a good office chair??

But, you can sit on the floor, right?? And for that, the table shouldn’t be higher than 1.5 feet…

Isn’t this a worthy idea??

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NO….you must sit on a good chair and before you spend any money on furniture to must know what makes a good office chair.

Why Is a Good Chair Important?

Please, read this carefully and repeat it if possible. Sitting on the floor is bad for your lower back and for your pelvic bones.

Therefore, you need a chair and a good one!

But, what makes a good office chair. You gotta know this before you spend your money.

The quality of a product is more important than its price. Don’t think that expensive chairs are better than those which are not so.

Research has proved that there is a concept working in markets called perceived Quality. It is different than the real (objective) quality of that product.

Both, perceived quality and actual quality, can be totally different. For example, Apple’s products can be of superior quality for Mr. A. but Mr. B thinks their products are not as good as……..say…..Samsung’s (no offense).

Mr. A perceived quality of Apple’s products is better but Mr. B doesn’t think so. So, perceived quality is a relative term.

We are talking about the features which make an office chair valuable and better than rest.

A chair is a good chair if the following points (I’ve named these features: the hummingbird features) are present in it.

  1. Adjustable Lumbar Support
  2. Comfortable sitting floor.
  3. Sufficient Seat Depth, Width, and Chair Height,
  4. Neck support,
  5. Armrests.
  6. Make Movement Easier With Swivel and Casters.

These first five things are musts for every ‘good’ chair. The last point is an added bonus. I have used chairs which are ‘good’ but do not have a wheeled-base or a caster.

Recommended:
3 best chairs for your lower back and hip pain in 2020

I’ve also used those with wheels but were awful for lower-back and neck.

Research has proved that a happy worker is a productive worker. So look for a ‘good’ chair when you go to purchase one

What makes a good office chair

Adjustable Lumbar Support

The most important feature of a chair is its support to the back, especially the lower back. If the chair doesn’t offer good support to the lower back in particular and the back in general then it’s place is the junkyard and not your room.

Supported lumber strengthens and not having one weakens your lower spine.

It is important for your Well-being to sit properly with good support to your back. A strong back is essential for you in terms of physical comfort, physical health, and working performance.

Comfortable sitting floor

Your spine is the base of your strength. Without a healthy spine, you could not move, lift objects or even stand.

A few years ago, I could only walk a few meters due to my bad back. The doctors told me to avoid sitting on the ground. This was because hard surfaces put pressure on the spine and pelvic bones.

Choose a chair with cushioned seating. The padding should be thick enough to not let the hips touch the seat-floor.

width, Depth, and Height

A good office chair has an adjustable height. The chair should allow the user to place the feet and the hight must be perpendicular to the calves.

Look for chairs with the following measurements:

  • Seat width: 16″-20″
  • Seat depth: 15″-18″
  • Seat height from floor: 18″-20″
  • Armrest height (full): 8”
  • Armrest width: 2″
  • Average Set back of armrest from the front: 2″-3″
  • Seatback height: 16″-20″

Armrests

It is also important that a chair offers a feature to place arms, especially when the user uses a computer.

You can find a debate on the internet that whether a chair should have an armrest or not? I would suggest that armrests are essential for a chair. I personally find those beneficial when sitting.

  • I can place my forearms when I work on a computer.
  • I can hold armrests for support when standing.

Some chairs offer the feature to adjust the armrests. You can lower or raise the armrests according to your preferences.

Look at these two chairs on Amazon (you can buy if you want to) the former is with armrest and the latter is without armrests.

Chair with armrests:

Classic Leather-Padded Mid-Back Office Desk Chair

Chair without armrests:

Boss Office Products Perfect Posture Delux Fabric Task Chair without Arms in Black

Adjustment Controls

It is important for a chair to be adjustable. This feature adds to the value a chair offers.

The Gothenburg Study:

Ia study conducted on 48 workers doing computer work in Gothenburg, Sweden. The study spanned over five weeks showed some interesting results.

  • The workers used the variety of adjustments their chairs had to offer.
  • it reduced the perceived loads over the neck and shoulder.

According to the authors, if used properly, the design features of an office chair can promote well-being.

How to adjust a chair?

You can change the height, tint and armrest height with few levers, knobs, and buttons.

The different adjustments a chair offers are:

  • A tilting back.
  • Raising and lowering the height.
  • Changing the height of armrests
  • Changing the rotation of neck support.

The RH 400 chair is famous for its multiple adjusting features. 

Make Movement Easier With Swivel and Casters

What’s a Caster?

A wheeled device to the bottom of each chair leg. These devices allow a chair to move easily. You can easily take the chair whenever you want without lifting it.

The two feature in a chair is valuable. You can do without them but the swivel (rotation) and casters (wheels) make work easier.

I said earlier that I have used chairs with and without the two features and the results are obvious.

Take a look at this chair. I personally have used it and it’s like (not the same but similar is available on Amazon classic Leather Office Desk Guest Chair with Metal Frame 

The chair was comfortable

  • Nice cushioned floor
  • Supports spine
  • Have armrests

But it was static. I had to carefully push the chair back and then stand even when I had to take a piece of paper just a few meters away from my desk.

We recommend using a chair with casters.

However, if you are unsure whether to use a chair with caster or not, try to answer these questions:

  • How the chair will be used?
  • Will the cair be use used to move frequently?
  • What type of flooring the chair will be rolling across.?

Recommended:
Things needed when establishing an office

Conclusion:

Buying a chair becomes an easy task when you know what makes a good office chair. Remember, your health has priority overwork. Therefore, select the chair which has all the essential features which are must in a chair. 

References:
☺ chairsource.ca
☺ Osvalder, A. L., & Colmsjö, A. (2015, November). Design features of an office chair promoting health and performance upon sedentary work. In Nordic Ergonomics Society 47th Annual Conference, Lillehammer, Norway. Retrieved from: https://www. researchgate. net/publication/283545345_Design_features_of_an_office_cha ir_promoting_health_and_performance_upon_sedentary_work [Accessed: 7 June 2018].

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