When you are looking for the perfect office chair, it's best to consider more than a chair's appearance. Even if a chair is suitable for the interior design of your office, it may not keep you comfortable throughout your workday. Here are five features to consider when selecting your next office chair:
1. Height Adjustment
Adjusting the height of your seat can relieve the knees and thighs. If a seat is positioned too low, there may be undue pressure placed on your kneecaps from the added flexion. In addition, if you share your office space with a coworker of a different height, the seat will need to be adjusted regularly depending on who is using the chair. For proper positioning, your thighs should be horizontal to the floor, and your leg position should allow full contact between the floor and the soles of your feet. Most office chairs can be adjusted pneumatically with a convenient lever.
2. Lower Back Support
Many chairs that are ergonomically designed for proper fit have a special lumbar support device. If you have experienced lower back pain from long hours at your desk, lumbar support may provide some relief. A support device may consist of a firm cushion or a flexible, netted mechanism. Some devices may be adjusted to provide different amounts of pressure. Others can be re-positioned higher or lower on the back.
3. Seat Width
If an office seat is too narrow, the arm rests of your chair, depending on their height, may place undue pressure on the sides of your waist and hips. The width of your seat is not normally an adjustable feature in office chairs. However, most manufacturers will disclose the seat width in the chair's dimensions. A seat that measures 17 to 20 inches is usually sufficient for most people.
4. Weight Limitations
When selecting a chair, it is best to match your weight to the chair's limitations. Even if the chair looks sturdy, it may accommodate a relatively low amount of weight. A chair constructed primarily of hollowed aluminum will typically have a lower weight limit than a chair with a stainless steel base.
5. Seat Construction
The material of the seat should be cushioned enough to promote circulation in the lower region of the body, but it should not be so soft that it encourages slouching. In addition, the seat covering should allow air to circulate through.
When you are searching for a new office chair, consider the way that it conforms to your body. Keep in mind that your chair will be in use for long hours during the day. If you have trouble selecting the perfect chair, contact an office furniture specialist (such as D&R Office Works, Inc.) for guidance.