Lower back pain is one of the most common health complaints in modern America. It is estimated that between 80 and 85% of the population will experience back problems during their life. A majority of this back pain is caused by poor posture and inadequate back support, caused by hours of long sitting in poorly-designed office chairs. Desk jobs have relegated many individuals to a sedentary lifestyle, requiring workers to stay sitting for up to 15 hours a day.
Though staying seated is a job requirement for many, it is, in fact, possible to prevent back problems at work by finding a desk chair that offers proper lumbar support. If you’re tired of experiencing a bad back due to improper seating, you may want to consider investing in an ergonomic office chair. Are you tired of experiencing back pain on the job? Read on to learn more about ergonomic back support, and the types of chairs that can help prevent back pain.
The Advantages of Using an Ergonomic Office Chair
The advantages of using an ergonomic office chair over a conventional desk chair are numerous. Most of us have experienced the unpleasant sensation of worsening back pain while seated in an office chair. Hours spent hunched over paperwork or squinting at a computer screen result in poor back and spinal posture. Such posture can overextend the neck and shoulder muscles, resulting in muscle strain throughout the neck, back, and shoulders. Arms and legs may also be affected by the poor posture caused by conventional desk seating. Many individuals feel as though this pain is an inevitable side-effect of white-collar living; this, however, is patently untrue. An ergonomic office chair can rectify your bad posture and prevent nearly all of your back pain at work.
A standard work chair is produced with a “one-size-fits-all” design. Though this type of seating may work for some, most individuals will eventually experience back problems from sitting in poorly-designed office chairs. Normal office seating cannot provide adequate back support for most individuals. The back of these chairs may be too high or too low, too far forward or too far back. These chairs do not allow for the backrest to be adjusted, often exacerbating lower back pain.
Ergonomic desk chairs are better equipped for periods of long sitting. Many are adjustable, and can be customized to fit an individual’s height, spinal curvature, and seating arrangement.
In conjunction with an improved desk and computer set-up, ergonomic office chairs can provide the following benefits:
- improved lower back and lumbar support
- adjustable height, allowing for improved leg and foot comfort
- ergonomic chair back, better suited to the curvature of the spine and shoulders
- improved arm support
- more comfortable neck positioning and support
- better positioning of the head, leading to less overall pain and eyestrain
- improved everyday posture and decreased muscle tension
- increased ability to work for longer periods of time with little or no back pain
I Suffer From Lower Back Pain – How Do I Choose an Office Chair?
When looking to purchase an ergonomic desk chair, you will want to consider a number of features. Oftentimes, testing out a chair in person will give you a good idea of whether a particular work chair would be a good fit for you.
Choosing to purchase a chair online is a great option as well; you will, however, have to be more careful about finding a chair that best suits your needs, height, and desk arrangement.
Here are the main features you will want to consider before purchasing an ergonomic chair:
- An Adjustable Seat Height Many individuals’ back pain is caused by a poorly-fitted seat. An ideal chair should be adjustable in height, and should come with a lever or other mechanism to allow for height adjustments. You should look for a chair that can be adjusted to your calf length, allowing your feet to rest flatly and squarely on the ground. Additionally, make sure that the seat will allow for comfortable leg room beneath your desk.
- A Well-Fitted Seat Depth Perhaps the most crucial factor in finding a good ergonomic chair is finding a seat that allows for the user to rest his or her back comfortably against the back of the chair. Many individuals sit in chairs that are too deep for them, resulting in slouching or leaning too far back in the seat. Ideally, you should find a seat with an adjustable back. The chair’s back should be fitted so that you can sit in an upright position with your spine against the chair’s back, while allowing for roughly three inches of space between the back of your knees and the edge of the seat. This will allow for ideal posture and comfort. Consider checking the measurements of the seat’s width as well. Though most chairs come in a standard size, some individuals may want require a somewhat wider seat.
- An Adjustable Back with Good Lumbar Support The back of your new work chair should be adjustable, allowing you to adjust the positioning of the chair’s lower back support to match the height and curvature of your lumbar. Conventional office chairs rarely fit individuals’ lower backs, leading to back strain and slouching. Finding a chair that naturally supports your lumbar will help to prevent back pain in the future.
- Good Arm Support Most individuals with back problems will find that a chair with good armrests provides them with additional support and comfort. Some, however, prefer the freedom of a chair without armrests. Choose a design that suits you best, and is comfortable for your height and size.
- Comfortable Material and Padding No one seat material is best for all individuals. Finding a chair that suits you is essentially a matter of fit and preference. Ideally, a good ergonomic chair should provide you with adequate cushioning and support without feeling bulky or overly padded. Some individuals prefer a chair with a cushioned back, while others prefer a semi-porous mesh backing. Consider whether the chair will be comfortable in the summer months, as well as the winter, as some materials breathe better than others. What matters most is that the chair is comfortable for daily use.
- Alternative Styles and Features Before settling on an ergonomic chair, be sure to consider the overall design of the chair. Though conventional desk chairs are the most popular design, some individuals prefer ergonomic kneeling chairs or stools. If other features, such as color, design, and chair rotation are important to you, consider researching these features before making a purchase.
REVIEWS: THE 5 BEST ERGONOMIC OFFICE CHAIRS FOR LOWER BACK PAIN
Are you looking for a great ergonomic office chair, but aren’t sure quite where to start? Check out these top rated picks for the best five ergonomic desk chairs for 2016! For review after review, customers rave about the comfort of these desk chairs. If you’re looking for relief from your back pain, these chairs are certain to do the trick.
The Aeron Chair by Herman Miller is arguably the best ergonomic office chair ever designed. One of the best models is the “highly adjustable” Aeron Model. This incredibly comfortable chair comes equipped with a lumbar pad for excellent lower back support, leaving customers raving that they’re comfortable sitting in the Aeron for over 8 hours a day. Even customers with major back surgery claim that the Aeron is the best ergonomic office chair they’ve ever purchased. The chair comes in a variety of sizes ranging from A to C, allowing for all individuals, from petite to hefty, to find a chair that meets their needs.
Though the Aeron Chair is pricey, the comfort it provides is worth every penny. Customers rave that the chair is by far the best ergonomic work chair on the market. When purchased through an official Herman Miller retailer, the chair comes with a 12 year warranty as well, ensuring that you’ll get more than a decade of use out of your new ergonomic chair. If you have a bad back and are desperately looking for relief, the Aeron Chair is the solution to all of your problems. Purchasing an Aeron Chair is a decision you won’t regret. (Click Here for Current Price & More Details).
If you’re looking for a top-notch chair for an excellent price, look no further than the Office Star Professional Air Grid Back Chair. Individuals who have used these chairs rave that they are high-quality and durable, providing firm lumbar support while promoting good posture. One man, who has assembled dozens of ergonomic chairs, claims that the Office Star chair is the best quality he’s seen from an office chair in this price range. Though the back isn’t adjustable like the Aeron Chair, customers claim that the back support is as comfortable for tall males as it is for petite females. The chair comes with adjustable armrests, which can also be left off the chair, if preferred. The chair’s back support is practically unparalleled, giving relief to patients suffering from such problems as chronic back pain and osteo-arthritis.
If you’re looking for an excellent, firm, ergonomic office chair for under $200 (Click Here for Current Price & More Details), the Office Star Professional Air Grid Back Chair is the best choice for you.
The Boss Black Executive Chair is the perfect ergonomic desk chair for those seeking extra cushioning and comfort. The padding on this chair is so soft that customers describe it as “buttery,” allowing for those who suffer from conditions ranging from crippling back pain to macular degeneration to finally experience relief from aches and pains. The chair is extra-cushioned, providing comfortable support for those whose work requires hours of staying seated. Customers also rave that the chair took under 10 minutes to assemble, allowing them to get seated within minutes. The chair is particularly durable as well, and is capable of withstanding up to 250 pounds. The chair can also be reclined up to 30 degrees, allowing for comfortable relaxation and lounging as well.
For those looking for a cushioned ergonomic desk chair for under $200 (Click Here for Current Price & More Details), the Boss Black Executive Chair will likely meet all of your needs.
The Mirra Chair by Herman Miller is another top-notch choice for those willing to invest in a high-quality ergonomic desk chair. The Mirra Chair comes in a gorgeous two-toned citron color, making it one of the most stylish work chairs on the market. Customers claim that the chair is perfect for heavier individuals, as the chair easily supports up to 400 pounds. The chair provides firm lower back support with its unique, breathable design.
If you’re looking for a great Herman Miller chair for slightly less than the cost of the Aeron, the Mirra Chair is the right fit for you. (Click Here for Current Price & More Details).
The Fellowes Professional Series Back Support chair is our top pick for an ergonomic desk chair on a budget. This small but mighty ergonomic chair is armrest-free and comes with excellent memory-foam cushions for perfect mid- and lower back support. The memory foam cushioning works for people of all sizes, and retains heat for extra comfort in the winter. For less than $50 (Click Here for Current Price & More Details), this chair is perhaps the cheapest back pain remedy money can buy. Customers rave that they no longer need to shove pillows behind their back. Both tall and short individuals claim that the chair fits them perfectly.
Simply put, the Fellowes Back Support chair is the perfect choice for those seeking great lumbar support at an even greater price. At the end of a long workday, this is one purchase you won’t regret.
Though finding the perfect ergonomic work chair may seem like a daunting task, there are now many comfortable, affordable ergonomic desk chairs on the market. Whether you can afford a Herman Miller chair or are seeking better back support on a budget, there are now dozens of excellent options on the market. Don’t forget to consider chair measurements before making a purchase, and you’ll be sure to find a chair that fits you well. If possible, visit a store and try out a number of ergonomic chairs before making a final purchase. Doing so will save you the stress of having to de-assemble and return a chair that you purchase.
Purchasing an ergonomic chair can make the difference between a work day filled with pain and a work day filled with comfortable productivity. Don’t stay in pain any longer. Do you research, and discover your new ergonomic chair today.