You might not realise it, but your back is naturally curved. These curves help absorb and distribute the loads that your body experiences throughout the workday. This is why an ergonomic chair is a hugely beneficial addition to your office.
A good-quality ergonomic chair can adjust to your body’s needs, facilitating movement and helping you focus on your work.
Above: a traditional office chair doesn’t offer the same benefits as an ergonomic chair. Note the lack of lumbar support, non-adjustable armrests and non-breathable padding.
I highly recommend buying one of these ergonomic office chairs if you sit for more than 4-5 hours daily. Here are the top 7 benefits you can expect.
1. Supports A Good Posture.
Since traditional chairs don’t provide lumbar support, your spine isn’t supported in a neutral position strain throughout your workday.
However, with an ergonomic chair’s lumbar support, your back remains in an ideal posture throughout the day.
(Related: Complete Guide To Proper Sitting Posture).
2. Encourages Movement.
If you sit in a neutral spine all day without moving, I’d be just as worried about you as if you sat slouched on a rock.
Your back is in constant motion while you’re seated. It wants to lean, twist, rock and stretch – and ergonomic furniture is designed to facilitate this.
3. Relieves Discomfort.
A lot of people have bodies that are easily upset, and ergonomic office chairs can ease some of the discomforts.
An ergonomic chair doesn’t solve your back issues at the core. Instead, it merely helps you sit in a position that doesn’t aggravate your issues.
Conventional chairs insist that you sit in a position that they dictate. In contrast, ergonomic chairs have enough adjustable features for the chair to adapt to your needs.
(Related: Best Office Chairs For People With Bad Backs).
4. Improves Circulation.
A good ergonomic chair will allow you to sit with all limbs at 90-degree angles to one another.
This creates optimal conditions for good circulation, ensuring that every part of your body can function appropriately and preventing your legs from experiencing pins and needles.
5. Improved Work Quality.
In addition to improved productivity, your work quality will also improve because you’ll be able to focus better on your work instead of being distracted by discomfort in your body.
6. Lowers Costs.
Ergonomic chairs are built to higher standards than traditional office chairs, which means they tend to last longer.
But it’s not uncommon for high-end ergonomic chairs like the Herman Miller Aeron to last for over 15 years.
Even though the Aeron is one of the most expensive office chairs on the market, it’s comparatively affordable when you divide its cost by the number of years it’s likely to serve you.
Don’t forget that the best ergonomic office chairs hold their value quite well. Using Aeron as an example again, after purchasing one for about $2500 brand new, you’ll be able to sell it on Gumtree 4-5 years later for about $800-$1000.
7. Improves Comfort.
Let’s not forget good old-fashioned comfort, shall we?
Nothing could be further from the truth. Ergonomic office chairs are comfortable because they keep you suspended and supported, not cosseted.
The ideal feeling is of weightlessness, where the chair disappears, and you’re free to adopt any of your body’s natural positions.
A good ergonomic chair shouldn’t feel cushy or hard. It should feel taught.
The Top 3 Features Of An Ergonomic Chair.
Unlike traditional office chairs, ergonomic chairs are specifically designed to help you obtain proper support.
Of course, the more features an ergonomic chair possesses, the higher its cost. I’ve provided a list of the essential features here. For a full breakdown, read my guide – “What Makes A Chair Ergonomic?”
1. Lumbar Support.
Yes, lumbar support is an essential component of a good ergonomic chair. Without it, you tend to slouch, which increases fatigue and discomfort.
2. Adjustable Armrests.
Having adjustable armrests is important because they allow you to keep your shoulders relaxed.
3. Adjustable Seat Height & Depth.
The ideal sitting position is with your feet flat on the ground, your thighs horizontal, and your arms level with your desk. To ensure that you achieve this optimal position, an ergonomic chair with an adjustable seat height is a must.
Seat depth is a highly desirable feature as it enables you to fine-tune the amount of support under your thighs. It’s usually found only in premium ergonomic chairs like the Ergotune Supreme.
Final Words About Traditional Chairs vs Ergonomic Chairs.
While it can be tempting to save money by buying a traditional office chair, an ergonomic chair is a better long-term solution. Its many benefits include better posture, improved productivity and reduced costs.