12 Things to Consider When Choosing an Office Chair

For those who work in a workplace, you in all probability spend most, if not all, of your workday sitting. A survey carried out by the corrective lens firm Acuvue discovered that workplace employees spend 6.5 hours on common sitting. For 12 months, that’s roughly 1,700 hours sitting.

Whether or not you spend a rough time sitting, you’ll be able to defend yourself from joint aches and even improve your productivity by investing in a high-quality workplace chair. You’ll be capable of working extra effectively without experiencing again aches and different musculoskeletal issues (MSDs) to which so many workplace employees are vulnerable. Listed below are 12 vital issues to contemplate when selecting a workplace chair.

1) Materials


The fabric utilized in a workplace chair’s building will affect its efficiency. Through the years, producers have begun utilizing a wide range of supplies to provide their workplace chairs, every one of which has distinctive traits.

A few of the commonest supplies through which workplace chairs are made embody:

  • Real Leather-based: Consisting of tanned cowhide or sheepskin, real leather-based workplace chairs are gentle, cool, fashionable, and sturdy.
  • Fake Leather-based: Whereas fake leather-based workplace chairs appear and feel like real leather-based, they’re often products of different supplies, together with both artificial or natural materials.
  • Vinyl: Vinyl workplace chairs are gentle and comfy, and since vinyl is an artificial material, they’re naturally immune to water and different liquids.
  • Nylon: Sometimes used to create mesh backrests, nylon is one other material through which workplace chairs are made. Nylon workplace chairs are cool, breathable, and lightweight.
  • Plastic: The least costly possibility, plastic workplace chairs are typically utilized in ready rooms the place where a lot of chairs are wanted.
  • Wooden: The oldest sort of fabric used to make workplace chairs is wooden. Wooden workplace chairs are sturdy, enticing, and out there in numerous types.

2) Lumbar Help

Lumbar Help

When selecting a workplace chair, contemplate whether or not it provides lumbar help. Some individuals assume that again ache solely happens in laborious jobs, akin to building or manufacturing, nevertheless, it’s usually workplace employees who’re most vulnerable to this MSD. In line with a study of practically 700 workplace employees, 27% of workplace employees expertise a brand new occasion of low again ache annually.

To decrease your threat of low again ache, select a workplace chair with lumbar help. Lumbar help refers to padding or cushioning across the backside of the backrest that helps the lumbar area of your again (the world of your again between your thoracic and pelvic areas). It stabilizes your decrease again, thereby decreasing stress and rigidity in your backbone and its supporting buildings.

3) Weight Capability

All workplace chairs have a weight capability, which you need to comply with for your security and the security of your chair. For those who weigh greater than the capability for which your workplace chair is rated, it may break under the stress of regular use.

You’ll discover most workplace chairs have a 200 to 250-pound weight capability. The excellent news is that some workplace chairs are designed particularly for heavier employees. Referred to as big and tall office chairs, they function as a sturdier building to offer a better weight capability. Large and tall workplace chairs can be found in 300-, 400- and 500-pound weight capacities. Along with a better weight capability, some fashions additionally function as bigger seats and backrests. Select a workplace chair with a better weight capability than the burden of your physique.

4) Casters


Not all workplace chairs function in a standard four-legged design. Some are designed with mounted wheels, referred to as casters, that let you roll around and rotate while sitting in them. If in case you have an L-shaped desk, for instance, you’ll be able to roll or rotate between the different areas of your desk. If in case you have a PC in one space of your desk and a writing station in the opposite space, you’ll be able to rapidly transfer between these areas without standing up should you select a workplace chair with casters.

On its website, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends using workplace chairs with 5 casters in PC workstations to advertise productivity and scale back the chance of damage. You possibly can nonetheless use conventional four-legged chairs in convention rooms, ready rooms, and breakrooms. For PC workstations, selecting a five-wheeled workplace chair will enhance your productivity while making a safer office within the course.

5) Measurement


House is a useful commodity in places of work, in addition to most different workplaces, which is why it’s vital to contemplate dimension when selecting a workplace chair. For those who work in a small cubicle, it’s possible you’ll not have the luxury of selecting an outsized govt workplace chair, through which case you’ll want to decide on a smaller chair.

Before buying a workplace chair, get the measurements of the world through which you plan to make use of it. Utilizing these measurements, you’ll be able to select an appropriately sized workplace chair. Keep in mind, that you’ll be able to at all times match a small workplace chair into a big workstation, however, you’ll be able to match a big workplace chair right into a small workstation. When doubtful, select a workplace chair that’s not less than some inches smaller than the world through which you plan to make use of it.

6) Adjustable Top

Fastened-height workplace chairs typically have a seat-to-floor peak of 17 to 19 inches, permitting most workplace employees to comfortably make use of them at the entrance of desks and workstations. However not all workplace employees are the identical peak, and should you be too tall or quick for a fixed-height workplace chair, it might stress your again or neck when sitting in it.

OSHA recommends selecting a workplace chair with an adjustable peak of 15 to 22 inches, which means you need to be capable of decreasing the seat to simply 15 inches off the ground or increasing the seat to 22 inches off the ground. Whether or not you might be quick, tall, or common peak, it will let you comfortably use your desk or workstation. Most workplace chairs don’t go down to fifteen inches so you’ll have to accept 17 to 21 inches. Simply an FYI, this measurement is usually measured from the ground to the highest of the seat cushion. And, whereas we’re on the subject of changes, it would additionally profit you tremendously to decide on a workplace chair with some ergonomic adjustments.

7) Type


The model of a workplace chair does not affect its performance or efficiency, however, it would affect the chair’s aesthetics and, subsequently, your workplace’s décor. You will discover workplace chairs in numerous types, starting from conventional all-black govt types to colorful trendy, and modern types.

So, what model of workplace chair do you have to select? For those who’re selecting a workplace chair for a big workplace, persist with a well-recognized model to create a cohesive décor. In case your workplace presently makes use of conventional all-black govt workplace chairs, for instance, select an analogous all-black govt model. In case your workplace makes use of brown leather-based workplace chairs, however, select a brown leather-based model. Utilizing a constant model together with your workplace chairs will improve your workplace’s décor by making a cohesive inside.

8) Breathability

Some workplace chairs are more breathable than others, making them perfect for workplace employees who get uncomfortably sizzling throughout the workday. Referred to as mesh office chairs, they’re characterized by a backrest product of permeable mesh material.

By definition, the period “mesh” refers to strands of material that can be linked collectively to type the looks of an internet. Mesh workplace chairs don’t have a strong backrest. As a substitute, they’ve {a partially} open backrest. Because of this, you’ll keep cooler and extra snug when sitting in a mesh workplace chair. The mesh backrest permits warmth out of your physique to flee, primarily ventilating your physique when you work.

For those who work in a cool workplace the place the temperature is constantly 68 levels Fahrenheit or beneath – or should you sometimes keep cool throughout the workday – you may not need a mesh office chair. Nevertheless, if you end up getting sizzling regularly when working, a mesh workplace chair is brilliant funding. Its permeable backrest will permit warmth to flee your physique, keeping you cool and comfy.

9) Armrests

Correct arm angle when sitting

Armrests let you relax your forearms while sitting at the entrance of a desk or workstation. Without armrests, you have no place to relax your forearms, leading to elevated fatigue in addition to a better threat of MSDs. For desks and workstations, armrests are a vital function for workplace chairs. In different areas of the workplace, together with breakrooms and ready rooms, armrests are non-compulsory.

In line with OSHA, workplace chair armrests ought to have the following options:

  • Mushy padded materials
  • Lengthy and vast sufficient to adequately help your forearms
  • The adjustable peak of seven to 10.5 inches from the seat
  • Detachable (capacity to boost or decrease them)

10) Reclining


There are each reclining and non-reclining workplace chairs. For maximum consolation, the previous sort is beneficial as a result it lets you lean ahead or backward relying on your wants. In its information to selecting an ergonomic workplace chair, the Basic Providers Administration (GSA) – an authorities group designed to help different federal companies – says workplace chairs with a reclining backrest scale back stress on the again and thighs.

With a reclining backrest, you’ll be able to stretch periodically throughout the workday without standing up. Some workplace chairs even let you lock the backrest into your required reclined place. Simply unlock the backrest, and recline it again till you discover the right place for maximum consolation after which relock it. As soon as locked, it receives a tilt ahead or backward, permitting you to make use of your workplace chair in its present place for as long as you want.

11) Guarantee


The extra sturdy the chair, the higher the guarantee

Don’t overlook to verify the guarantee when looking for a brand-new workplace chair. After all, not all workplace chairs are backed by a guarantee, which is a purple flag indicating that the producer is just not assured of the efficiency of its product. If a producer doesn’t supply a guarantee with a workplace chair – or if the producer provides a subpar guarantee – you need to select a distinct workplace chair.

It’s not unusual for respected workplace chair producers to supply a multi-year guarantee with their merchandise. Boss workplace chairs are backed by a six-year producer guarantee, whereas ERA and HON workplace chairs are backed by a restricted lifetime producer guarantee. If an element coated beneath the chair’s guarantee fails throughout the guarantee interval, the producer pays to restore or exchange it.

For those who select a high-quality workplace chair from a good producer, you in all probability must file a guaranty declaration. Nonetheless, a guaranty supplies peace of thought realizing that if one thing occurs to your workplace chair throughout the guarantee interval, the producer will restore or exchange it at no cost.

Be cautious of shops and distributors that promote workplace chairs and do not use a guarantee. You would possibly get fortunate and discover a high-quality workplace chair, however, there’s often a purpose some producers don’t again their merchandise with a guarantee – and that’s as a result of their merchandise fail prematurely. To keep away from this headache, select a workplace chair with a powerful producer guarantee.

12) Worth


How much cash need to spend on your new workplace chair? Like different workplace furnishings, the price of workplace chairs varies depending on their model, mannequin, and the shop from which you buy them. Low-end workplace chairs are priced as little as $100, whereas high-end workplace chairs can be priced at $600 or more.

Even the fitting low-end workplace chair can final for years. Nevertheless, should you be in search of the best degree of help, consolation, and safety from MSDs, select a mid- or high-end mannequin? You’ll get higher worth, over time, from a mid- or high-end workplace chair than a low-end workplace chair.

When looking for a workplace chair, contemplate its whole price. Some shops cost transport and dealing with charges, which might add 10% or more to the full price of a workplace chair. If you buy a $500 workplace chair, as an example, you may spend a further $50 on transport and dealing with charges. Moreover, you’ll have to pay gross sales tax on a workplace chair. If you buy a workplace chair regionally, the shop will doubtless gross sales tax primarily based on the state’s designated fee, which ranges from 3% to 7% on common.

You possibly can keep away from transport and deal with charges by buying your workplace chair from Office Chairs Unlimited, as we provide free transport on all merchandise. And unless you reside within the state of Pennsylvania, you received’t be charged gross sales tax.

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