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Sitbetter Chair Blog
Relax, have a seat, and read our Blog.
Admit it or not, you spend most of your days awake- and during those times, you spend more than half sitting. You sit while working on your laptop. You sit while eating. You sit while listening to your boss in a conference. With all those sitting, you are bound to develop health issues, particularly in the back area. To prevent injuries from sitting for a long time, you need to choose the right kind of chair. For many, this means buying ergonomic chairs. What’s all the fuss about ergonomic chairs? Injuries are a no-no. If you sit all day, you tend to develop them over time. Ergonomic chairs try to prevent these injuries from happening. This, in turn, increases your productivity since you are not bothered about aches and pains while working. Your focus is only in your work. Ergonomic chairs are often adjustable. That said, these still allow support for various sitting positions during work. Most tasks where sitting is involved require repetition. Add awkward postures in the mix and you have a recipe for back pain.
What makes the ergonomic chair differs from the rest? The idea of sitting on an ergonomic chair is something like this: It is not about you just sitting on a chair; it is about the chair doing its job of sitting you comfortably on it. By using this kind of chair gives a positive impact on you in general, your productivity and health. That said, the chair should fit your body dimensions as well as the nature of tasks done while sitting on the said chair. Ergonomic chairs are not just about preventing risks; it is also about comfort. The more comfortable you are seated in a particular chair, the better your work performance. It is as simple as that.
What to look for in an ergonomic chair
The chair is predominantly the first thing that comes to mind when you feel discomfort during work time. For OSHA, you need to focus on these four chair parts to ensure that you are seated in a safer and better position:
- Seat pan
Don’t Forget the Armrest
You need proper support for the arms since these carry 10% of your body weight. Incorrect armrest position leads to muscle fatigue particularly in the back, shoulders and neck areas. This means the armrests should not be too high, too low or too close to the neck. This should also allow you to move naturally.
What to look for
- Adjustable armrests – This means the arm caps are movable.
- You can move them closer to your body or farther from it when necessary.
- The armrests can also be moved vertically to suit how high or low you want your elbows and arms to rest on it.
- Padded armrests – These reduce contact stress.
- Soft edges – These reduce the chances of you being injured because of the sharp edges.
What to avoid
- Chairs that you don’t feel relaxed sitting on – This means the chair should not be too wide, too narrow or too high.
- Chairs that have a hard material that can irritate the skin.
The Quest for the Right Backrest
The back is normally has an S-curved shape. The backrest should mold that curve to ensure that the sitter is comfortable. A slightly reclined chair is recommended. Incorrect support can lead to slouching and lower back pain. What to look for
- Wide backrest - The backrest should be about 12-19 inches across.
- Adjustable – This means that you can adjust it backward, forward, upward and downward. Note: There should be a locking device that secures the appropriate angle preferred.
- Reclining options – You should be able to recline to your preferred position. Note: There should be a locking device that secures the appropriate angle preferred.
What to avoid
- Fixed support - Ergonomic chairs come in different sizes and styles. You should avoid this for it might not support your back the way it should be.
Don’t Be a Deadman with Your Seat Pan
Ergonomic chairs allow even weight distribution that results to better sitting comfort. The requirements given by HFES 100, one of the leading ergonomic organizations, state that:
- The seat base should be at least 17.7 inches
- The seat depth should be less than or equal to 16.9 inches
- The seat can be tilted at least at 4 degrees and it should include 3 degrees tilted backwards
What to look for
- Width – Look for the ones that provide at least one inch space on each side.
- Waterfall design – This a front feature reduces the pressure on the back of the knees that can lead to poor circulation. Also consider the depth of the seat pan.
- Adjustability – You would be able to adjust how tilted you want the seat pan for comfort.
What to avoid
- Fixed seat height – Incorrect height of the seat pan can lead to more pressure on the buttocks or poor circulation.
Don’t Forget to Embrace Your Base
Many overlook this part of the chair, the reason why this is included in this list. The base supports the whole chair. There should be emphasis on the material and strength of the chair for that matter.
What to look for
- The number of legs – Five is the most appropriate because it evenly distributes the weight of the sitter and the chair on the floor.
- Casters – There are various types of casters. You can choose from plastic down to metals. Each material is suitable for a specific flooring.
What to avoid
- Chairs that tilt – this means that you might have difficulty in the balance while sitting on this type of chair.
If you want to go all the way in an ergonomic sense, you should follow this ergonomic seating guide to make your choice much easier. Ergonomic chairs can come in different styles and designs. Choosing one can be hard but you have this guide to help you narrow down your choices.
If it's the right chair, it doesn't take too long to get comfortable in it. - Robert De Niro
Truth be told, Mr De Niro is absolutely spot on. Being in the right chair can do you wonders. Imagine yourself, being taller and larger than most people, sitting in a smaller chair. How long will that take you to feel the pressure on your back? How long will that take you to realize that you are not in a good posture position? People seem to overlook the importance of having the right chair size. That said, taller people should consider buying big and tall office chairs.
Not all chairs are created equal
You might say, “I can fit in a regular chair. Why bother?” Well, for starters, a regular chair cannot hold a larger person’s weight; unfortunately, this chair has its limits. When the sitter, that’s you, has reached the weight capacity of the chair, it is the sitter who gets injured. Many just do not realize how varied their choices can be when office chairs. Why settle for something cheap when it can be easily broken down due to various reasons. One of the distinguishing characteristics of big office chairs is the wide seat capacity. Because of its width, you are given comfort and proper back support, something that you would definitely miss when purchasing regular sized office chairs. Another important aspect of these office chairs is that there is a weight limit capacity. By knowing how much weight the chair can withstand gives you better support. After all, as said, not all chairs are created equal.
What should I consider when buying big and tall office chairs?
- Is the weight limit enough?
For regular chairs, you are limited only up to 300 pounds. This means that a person sitting on that chair should not exceed the 300-pound mark the whole time being seated there. Since you would be buying big and tall office chairs, the weight limit should be equal or above the 500-pound mark.
- Does it give support?
A chair is not only something you use to sit on. A decent chair will you back support and comfort. The best office chairs are the ones that can provide custom support since many people prefer to be seated in one angle, giving more support to just one side of the lower back. The best kind of support is the asymmetric adjustable one. This kind allows to create height. You can also adjust one or both sides to suit the angle of lumbar support of your liking.
- Is the size big enough?
Chairs come in different sizes and so do people. Big and tall office chair dimensions should be more than the standard. For the standard measurement, the chair seat is about 15-17 inches from the back to the front edge of the seat. Its width is about 18 inches across. However, for big and tall office chairs, the dimensions exceed the standard. The best way to test if the chair you have in mind is indeed suitable for you is to check the sample chair and sit on it.
- Is the base stable?
Many people judge the chair its looks, ergonomic qualities and the likes. Most often, they seem to overlook how stable the chair is. Office chairs withstand not only the weight of the sitter but also the normal wear and tear. Many kinds of materials are used for the base. Plastic and nylon are the most common materials. If you are looking for a sturdier material, opt for aluminum and steel. The catch, however, is that the latter is an expensive material. If you plan to move the chair from one room to another, consider having them with wheels. That said, the material used on the wheel must be considered. Those made of metal last longer; these work better on carpeted areas too.
- Did a reputable company make it?
Reputable office chair manufacturers focus on quality. The chairs follow a rigid quality control before being sent to retailers. Apart from this, reputable manufacturers have longer warranties as opposed to others that only offer just one year. There is so much to gain when you have the right chair. The more comfort you feel while sitting on it, the more productive you become. You would not have lower back injuries brought by the wrong chair too.
There's nothing better than taking a load off at the end of the the day, and settling into our favorite armchair to watch some TV. But what you may not realize, is that your favorite TV characters were often sitting in some pretty memorable chairs as well. It can be exhausting entertaining audiences around the country, so they surely needed some rest and relaxation of their own. Here are some of the most famous chairs to have graced our TV sets over the years.
- Archie Bunker's Chair - Archie Bunker's chair from All in the Family is probably the most famous chair in television history. Archie ruled the roost from that sloppy old wingback chair, whether he was hollering at Edith to get him a beer, or making fun of his "Meathead" son-in-law. The chair is such an indelible symbol in American history, it now resides in the Smithsonian Museum in Washington, D.C.
- Martin Crane's Recliner -When Frasier's titular character invited his retired ex-cop father Martin to move in, he didn't expect the elder Crane to bring his beat-up old recliner with him. It didn't exactly fit in with Frasier's designer aesthetic, but when he tried to get rid of the chair, Martin revealed its emotional significance, and Frasier let the chair stay.
- Chairy - This is probably the only instance of a chair that was actually a character on a TV show, but Chairy from PeeWee's Playhouse was one of the many objects in Pee-Wee's Playhouse that came to life before our eyes. Granted, as an adult, the idea of having a chair hug you when you sit down on it is a little bit creepy, but as a kid, it was the coolest.
- The Iron Throne -The throne from the hugely popular Game of Thrones is unarguably the scariest chair on this list. The Iron Throne may not be the best chair for back pain, but it's forged from over 1,000 swords of Aegon the Conquerer's enemies, so it sends quite a message. The seat of kings in the Seven Kingdoms has proven almost as deadly as the men who have sat on it, but it is probably the coolest looking chair on this list.
- The Simpsons' Couch - Okay, so choosing a couch is kind of cheating, but there's no denying the indelible image of that drab brown couch, packed full of America's favorite yellow family. The Simpsons has been on the air for 26 seasons now, and the coach has appeared in the opening credits of every episode, as the family piles onto the couch at the very end. Plus, the running couch gag is one of the best things to look forward to in each episode.
The most comfortable chairs for lounging in front of the TV may be squishy old couches, but at the office, it's important to make sure you have the best office chairs for lower back pain. The best office chairs for lower back pain are ergonomic computer chairs. These chairs have the adjustable features to prevent neck pain, muscle tension, and leg pain, and the lumbar pillow insert to support the lumbar spine, lower back muscles, and pelvic area.
About 31 million Americans are experiencing lower back pain at any given time, including 50% of all working Americans. It's important to pay attention to the way you're sitting, and how much time you're spending sitting. If you're going to spend your free time lounging on the couch, you better make sure you're spending your work day in the best office chairs for lower back pain.
The leaders of our great nation spend their days making hugely important decisions that affect an entire nation, if not the entire world. They obviously have a lot of weight on their shoulders, and as such at times need to take a load off, sit down in a nice comfortable chair, and relax.
Believe it or not, chairs have played an important role in our American presidency, and the shaping of our great nation over the years. Here are some of our country's most powerful chairs.
- JFK's Rocker - Like 50% of working Americans, John F. Kennedy suffered from chronic back pain. He found relief in the comfort and support of a sturdy rocking chair, and he acquired over 14 rocking chairs in his lifetime. One of these chairs even made it onto Air Force One, and another was a fixture in Kennedy's Oval Office.
- FDR's Wheelchair - Franklin Delano Roosevelt was handicapped by polio for much of his life, and spent much of his presidency in a wheelchair. He didn't want to be perceived as weak, physically or politically, so he was rarely photographed in his wheelchair. Only a few such photos exist today.
- Jefferson's Swivel Chair - Thomas Jefferson is famous for many things, but among them is his invention of the swivel chair! That's right, the desk chair you're sitting in now was basically invented by one of our Founding Fathers. It's also believed that Jefferson sat in his swivel chair as he drafted the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
- The Lincoln Memorial - Dedicated in 1922, and carved out of 28 blocks of white Georgia marble, the Lincoln Memorial is a stunning tribute to one of our most beloved presidents. The 19-foot seated figure sits on an 11-foot pedestal, gazing towards the Washington Monument. The president was larger-than-life when he lived, and still carves a large figure, even seated. And at least this is a much better seat than the one he had at Ford's Theatre.
- Invisible Obama's Chair - Alright, so this wasn't really an important chair, more like a memorable one. Remember when Clint Eastwood made a speech at the Republican National Convention in 2012, and directed it to a chair that an invisible President Barack Obama was allegedly sitting in? Whatever point he was trying to make was completely overshadowed by the fact that he looked like a rambling crazy man.
Whether you're an American President or Joe Schmo, it's still important to have the best office chairs for lower back pain. The best office chairs for lower back pain are ergonomic computer chairs. These chairs have the proper adjustments and lumbar pillow inserts that are the crucial features of the best office chairs for lower back pain. These features help support the lower spine and muscles of the lower back, as well as avoiding neck pain, muscle tension, and leg pain. Quality office chairs will make your job much easier, even if that job is leading the free world.
There are some jobs in this country that seem like only a risk-taker could do. Firefighter, stuntman, soldier, and astronaut are a few occupation examples that might spring to mind. Sure, these jobs are dangerous, but none of them are among America's least healthy jobs. In fact, you could be surprised to learn that one of the least healthy jobs in America just might be yours.
The dangers vary from falls to respiratory illness to repetitive strain injuries, and much more. The most common occupational complaint, and one experienced in a number of the occupations on this list, is back pain. At least 50% of working Americans admit to having back pain annually, and experts estimate 80% of the population will experience it throughout their lifetime.
America's Most Unhealthy Jobs
(With average number of illness and injury reported to the Bureau of Labor Statistics)
- Construction Worker (125,120) - This one is not a huge surprise. Falls and repetitive injuries are common problems with construction workers.
- Office/Administrative Staff (83,320) - Did you know a desk job could be dangerous? Well, when you're sitting all day in a cheap office chair, it can be. Office workers can blame their office chairs for back pain, because without a lumbar pillow insert, a chair can result in back strain and poor posture. Also, inhaling toner and ink fumes all day doesn't help either.
- Sales Staff (76,210) - If they're not sitting in cheap office chairs all day, making sales over the phone, they're falling from ladders while gathering merchandise, straining to carry it to customers, or even being injured by malfunctioning displays.
- Nursing Aides, Orderlies, and Attendants (49,480) - These workers are exposed to dangerous chemicals and disease in hospitals and nursing homes, and also experience strains from lifting heavy patients.
- Janitors and Housekeepers (46,540) - The heavy carts that housekeepers push can cause back pain, and inhaling potent cleaning supplies can result in illness.
- Registered Nurses (20,500) - Lifting heavy patients, getting hit by gurneys, or even being attacked by patients' family members make this one of the most unhealthy jobs.
- Waiters (9,520) - Waiters are carrying trays weighing up to five pounds, all by themselves, often on one shoulder. So the next time you're worried about the weight you'll gain from a big meal, spare a thought for the person that had to carry that meal to your table.
- Computer Specialists (2,720) - These workers suffer a lot from repetitive injuries, but also from cramped workspaces.
If one of these jobs happens to be yours, don't panic. There are some simple steps you can take to prevent illness and injury in most professions.