Archive for the ‘back pain’ Category

How to Properly Fit Yourself to An Office Chair

Most of our jobs and lifestyles require sitting for multiple hours a day the majority of the work week. You could be sitting in your office chair tasking, sitting during a meeting, sitting waiting to be seen, or sitting in your car driving to and from work. For some of us we actually spend more time sitting down throughout the day than we do sleeping at night! Sitting for extended periods of time can take a toll on your body, especially if you are not sitting with proper posture. Bad posture can lead to unnecessary aches and pains or may eventually lead to ailments much more serious such as experiencing chronic back pain every time you sit. There are a few principles that everyone should take into consideration when fitting yourself to an office chair that can help you reduce and avoid pain, strain, and fatigue while sitting.

  1. Angles: Angles are a key factor that can help contribute to your overall comfort while sitting. Make sure that your chair allows for you to sit at a 90° angle in the following places: your knees, hips, and elbows. Angles at less than 90° have the detrimental effect of impeding circulation. In static seated situations, this can result in premature fatigue and discomfort. In general more “open” postures and chairs that support you in “open” postures, will allow you to sit more comfortably for longer periods of time. Before purchasing an office chair, make certain you know the exact seat height measurements to ensure the chair is going to work for you. If you are a shorter or taller individual you may need a specialized chair cylinder that allows the chair to be raised higher or shorter than an average cylinder would. Your armrests should also allow for height adjustability to make certain you are typing with your arms at a 90° angle.
  2. S Shaped Back

    Lumbar Curves and Support: Stand flat against a wall with your heels and shoulder blades touching the wall. Now place your hand behind your lower back, does it fit? If you cannot fit your hand behind you and have very little space between the wall and your lower back, you have a flat back and probably need a chair with very little lumbar support. If you can fit a flat hand behind you, you have a medium curve and need a medium level of lumbar support; at the very least you will need a chair with an “S” shaped back to give you some level of support. If you can fit a balled up fist behind your back, you have a deep curve, and need a higher level of lumbar support. This will require a chair with an “S” shaped back as well as some additional lumbar support such as a chair that can offer air lumbar support or self-adjusting lumbar support.

  3. Seat Height and Depth: Measure the depth of your seat. Be sure you have two to three inches between the edge of the chair and the back of your calf. Adequate seat depth distributes your weight evenly over the longest possible surface area. Inadequate surface area can impede circulation, cause numbness and result in difficulty when sitting for longer periods. If your seat depth is too long for your body you may find yourself having to lean forward to type, not allowing you utilize your back rest and receive proper back support. A seat slider can help remedy this problem which is a seat depth adjustment that permits the user to pull the chair out making it longer if they are taller or push the seat in if they are smaller. Proper seat height encourages you to sit back in your chair, resulting in correct body position with respect to the rest of your workstation.
  4. Motion: Critical to pain-free sitting is a chair that allows you to stay in motion. The more you move, the more you encourage blood flow, and the less stiff you become. Properly adjust the chair’s tension control to achieve your desired level of motion. Rule of thumb: static positions in and of themselves are a source of pain and fatigue. If your job requires you to sit often and for extended periods of time be certain to have a chair with tilt tension and tilt lock control which will allow you to lean back in your chair when a stretch break is needed.

Remember these simple fitting principles and you will find yourself sitting more comfortably and working more productively. If your current work office chair or home office chair does not allow for this, consider purchasing a new chair. It may seem like quite an investment, but in the long run it will save you from experiencing uncomfortable pain while sitting and keep you sitting better.

To view our wide selection of fully adjustable ergonomic chairs for back pain click here!

BackSac Molded Back Support Review

The Back Sac molded back support system is the first of its kind, with an original design unlike any o

ther lumbar support product on the market. A highly affordable back pain solution that is adaptable for both home or office usage.

The Back Sac is designed to fill the gap between your low back and a chair, or surface you are sitting on. It also fills the curve in your neck while lying down or reclining. The design is absolutely unique compared to other back support cushions. Most support cushions are made to fill the spinal curves by molding to the average person’s neck or low back curve. The Back Sac is one of the first products to acknowledge that your spinal curves are probably not average.

The Back Sac uses an air bladder that intentionally contains a larger potential volume than the area it needs to support. A small amount of air, relative to the potential volume is blown into the air bladder. The air can then travel into whatever space needs to be filled or supported.

What we thought:

Easy to use and effective. When I received my Back Sac in the mail I was anxious to test it out as I am with most back support products because I suffer from upper back pain from sitting for multiple hours on a daily basis. I have come to find that a lot of back support products do not provide me with the amount of support I need, or they simply do not fit in the curvature of my neck. After using the Back Sac for just one day I could already feel the difference it made on my body and I was already experiencing minimal upper back pain. I now have to have my Back Sac with me whenever I am sitting down and working because if I do not have it the same pain returns. I’m happy to report it has been two weeks since I first started using the Back Sac at work and I have not experienced any back pain since.

The Bad:

Usually for most of my reviews I can find a way to conjure up a few negative qualities of the product, however with the Back Sac I can only think of one minor setback that keeps me from saying its design is flawless. The only problem I can find with the Back Sac is that it does not allow for much movement; if you get up to move around, lean forward to type, or take a quick break to stretch you will need to reposition it again.

The Good:

The Back Sac is very affordable and conveniently priced at $19.95 to fit into everyone’s budget. The Back Sac is also very reasonably priced compared to other back support products sold elsewhere which can cost up to $100 for full back support. Not only is the price point favorable, but the amount of back support you will receive is unbeatable. Its unique design will have your back feeling healthier and happier from the moment you begin using the Back Sac support. At its ultra light weight of less than a pound, the Back Sac is also easily transportable and can be taken wherever it is needed including for use at work, home, or while traveling. It can also be easily deflated(the Back Sac only takes 3 breaths to inflate!) making it even more compact than it already is.

Grade:

5/5 Chairs

Overall, the Back Sac is a great investment, with the number of ways and the different capacities this support can be used in; it would be beneficial for anyone to own one or even multiples! The Back Sac is also great for people of any age from kids using it as a pillow for reading, to teens using it as a support while lying on the couch, to young adults using it as an exercise ball, and of course for adults as a back support for their office chair.

To purchase your own Back Sac molded back support click here!

8 Reasons To Own a Ball Chair

Evolution Ball Chair

Office chairs are becoming a thing of the past, as more offices and home users are making the switch to exercise ball chairs. While the idea of using an exercise ball as a chair may seem unconventional, many have already took a leap of faith and have thrown out their old office chairs and replaced it with a ball chair. Whether you use your office chair 8 hours a day at work, an hour a day while studying for a test, or for browsing the internet at home, a ball chair can easily substitute an office chair in any of these circumstances. If you haven’t already seen a ball chair in your office or other offices, you may begin to see them soon as more and more people become familiarized with the benefits of using an exercise ball as a chair.

  1. Better Posture – Most ball chairs come without a back rest which at first may feel a little unnatural, especially if you have spent years sitting in a traditional office chair. Although it may seem like sitting in a backless chair may be more harmful than beneficial, this actually helps remind the user to sit with proper posture and slouching or slumping over becomes more apparent. Sitting on a ball chair also requires some level of balance forcing your spine into proper alignment because coincidentally, sitting with perfect spinal positioning is the easiest way to balance oneself. Sitting with proper posture not only helps decrease your level of back pain but also improves your health.
  2. Improves Balance – Sitting on a surface that is unstable requires balance, especially when you are accustomed to consistently sitting on an office chair that stays in one place. Most ball chairs come with a sturdy base which allows for more stability over just using a regular exercise ball, however, some degree of balance is still required. After sitting for a few weeks on a ball chair you will start to see your improved balance, even outside of the office.
  3. Movability – Sitting on a ball chair naturally causes you to frequently change positions in order to keep balance. Moving around frequently creates a healthy work environment that usually can’t be achieved in a standard office chair. These constant small adjustments build the endurance and strength of the postural muscles which facilitate optimal posture. With this dynamic sitting experience you are taking away the stress of sitting in the same position for a prolonged period of time which tends to happen when sitting on a traditional office chair.
  4. Get Fit While You Sit – What most do not realize is that when you are sitting on a ball chair, you are working to stay balanced. Staying balanced and in an upright position requires your core muscles to work overtime, therefor giving you a low-key abdominal work out while you are working. Despite the low intensity abdominal work out, if you consider all the hours you spend sitting everyday at work those hours are going to eventually add up , resulting in strengthened ab muscles.
  5. Work Out While You Work – A great benefit of owning a ball chair, whether it has a stability base or not, is that you can easily transform your chair into a work out instrument. If your ball chair comes with a base, simply take it off its platform and it is as easy as that to perform a wide range of exercises and stretches. Your breaks and time spent waiting can be transformed into a productive work out and your equipment of choice is conveniently sitting right beneath you.
  6. Burn Calories While You Work – Moving around is the easiest way to burn calories, and with the continuous movement you will experience from sitting on a ball chair, it is possible to burn up to 350 calories in one day of working. This is a clear advantage over sitting in an office chair that forces you to sit in one position throughout the day. If you use your ball chair for multiple hours at a time on a regular basis, you may find yourself feeling and looking more fit.
  7. Inexpensive – A good ergonomic chair will cost about $200 and up depending on the desired quality and level of adjustability. Ball chairs are an inexpensive means of sitting with most averaging around $139 for a ball chair with a sturdy base or as little as $15 if you are just looking for an exercise ball.
  8. Make Work Fun – Use your imagination to see why a ball chair can be a fun and exciting alternative to an office chair. What kind of office chair allows you to bounce sporadically throughout the day while relieving your back aches and pains at the same time?

New users are recommended to make a gradual transition into sitting on a ball chair full-time to give your body time to adapt to this new way of sitting. Start off by sitting on the ball chair for 15 minutes your first day and increase your time by 15 minutes on each subsequent day until you make your way up to 8 hours. Some users have found that they like to use their ball chair in conjunction with their regular office chair, allowing them to switch to the ball chair at their convenience when their back wants a break. Still apprehensive about owning a ball chair? With its unique ergonomic qualities, obvious health benefits, and inexpensive cost you have nothing to lose and a whole lot to gain if you make the switch.

To view Sitbetter’s ultra ergonomic Evolution Ball Chair please click here!

Chairs for Lower Back Pain

The lower back is the connection between the upper and lower body and bears most of the body’s weight. With such a burden to bear the lower back can easily be injured and feel strained, especially without proper support and regular exercise. Lower back pain is often caused by strain, injury, or overuse. This can occur when lifting something that is too heavy, getting jolted in a car accident, playing sports, or simply by sitting for multiple hours a day in an office chair that has no lower back support. Aging may also play a part in developing lower back pain; bones and muscles lose strength with age thus leading to an increased risk of injury. The good news about lower back pain is that most cases will go away within a few weeks with some basic self-care. This can include sitting in an office chair that provides good lumbar support and is properly adjusted to meet the needs of the user.

Not all office chairs come with the necessary support to help eliminate and relieve lower back pain, so it is essential to look for the qualities that make a chair “back friendly”. There are numerous different chair designs that will provide lumbar support, some more basic than others. To start, the simplest kind of back support is a “S” shape design back rest. The importance of the “S” shape is that it mimics the actual shape of the spine, molding your spine into proper anatomical alignment. This benefit can not be achieved in “L” shaped chairs that have flat backs and work the other way around, forcing you to fit your back to the shape of the chair.

A chair with a “S” shape curve can be beneficial but can also work against you if not properly aligned with your spine. If an office chair comes with an “S” shape back rest that is not adjustable, shorter or taller users may not benefit from having the back support positioned on the correct parts of their spine. The next thing you should look for in an office chair after finding one with an “S” shape back is a ratchet back feature. This will allow you to easily move your backrest up or down with a simple knob or lever, allowing you to position the back exactly where you need the support. Not everyone is able to fit into one generic mold, which is why having a chair with adjustable features such as an adjustable back height can be advantageous.

Adjustable Lumbar Support

Another good feature some desk chairs possess is an adjustable lumbar support built into the back rest. If a chair does not have a ratchet back function, an adjustable lumbar support can make up for this and can even be more favorable in some opinions. Most adjustable lumbar supports allow the user to move the support up and down according to where they need it to rest on their lumbar region. More advanced lumbar supports allow for adjustment in and out in addition to movement up and down, allowing the user to determine the amount of pressure needed.

Perhaps the most advanced lumbar support system of all is the self-adjusting lumbar support. This unique support system self positions and moves with the user no matter which position they are sitting in. For example, in almost any chair if the user is leaning forward typing they will have any support on their lower back leading to aches and pains. With self-adjusting support, the lower back support is independent therefor allowing it to move with you whether leaning forward to type or sitting back to relax. This precise support provides exacting comfort and a more comfortable sitting experience.

There are many other different back support options available for office chairs, ranging in price and effectiveness. Some of the most advanced office chairs allow for exact placement of pressure along every spot of the vertebrae allowing for a fully customizable sitting experience, great for chronic back pain sufferers. For those with mild back pain, simply having an “S” shape back rest may suffice. The most important factor in achieving lower back pain relief with the help of an office chair is straightforward, having a chair that is going to provide you with the necessary support for your lumbar region. If you will be spending most of your day sitting might as well have a desk chair that is going to provide relief rather than strain.

To view our complete catalog of chairs for lower back pain please click here.

Why Own a Back Support Pillow?

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Lower Backrest

More than half of Americans live with chronic or recurring pain, most of whom say this interferes with their regular activities, lifestyle, mood, relationships, and work productivity. Six out of 10 of those who suffer from pain say that their pain is moderate or worse, and for 2 out of 10 it was considered to be severe. Interestingly enough, 1 out of 4 people who suffer from pain say that their last pain experience was with back pain. Back pain was the number one cause of pain among those surveyed, and peaked with men especially among between the ages 30-49. Sampling, data collection and tabulation for this poll were done by TNS Global. With such a large number of pain sufferers in the United States, many are seeking out ways to relieve, eliminate, or at least alleviate their pain to make their lives more comfortable and enjoyable. Getting back pain relief can be expensive with the never ending medical bills adding up and expensive furniture on the market that most simply can not afford. If continuous trips to the chiropractor are not feasible for your budget, consider investing in a back support pillow to help alleviate your back pain.

Deluxe Molded Lumbar Support

The majority of us spend the greater portion of our work days sitting, whether it is the commute to get to work or the long hours of working in an office chair. If your desk chair or car seat is not providing you with full back support, aches and pains are sure to occur, especially if you are sitting for hours at a time. A properly maintained posture can help relieve and prevent back discomfort. While this concept may seem simple enough, after sitting for hours at a time it is easy to forget to have proper posture and eventually you may find yourself slouching over. Many back posture issues are created when sitting in a slumped position where your spine is not properly aligned. Back support pillows allow you to rest the spine in a position that conforms to the natural spine curvature while providing the support necessary to relieve pain. Their orthopedic design helps reduce back fatigue while sitting or driving.

Full Backrest

Back support pillows come in all different shapes, sizes, and features but all have one common goal in their design: providing back pain relief. Lumbar support pillows are designed to replicate the S shape of your spine and fit right in that S curvature to provide lower back support where most chair and car seat backs do not. There are also full backrests which envelope the entire back and spine, providing both lumbar support and upper back/neck support for moderate cases of back pain. Not only do back support pillows provide the supreme support, but they are a much more viable option for those looking to save money. Most range between $25 for smaller lumbar pillows up to $100 for higher end full back pillows, a more economical approach to take as opposed to purchasing a new ergonomic office chair. In addition to savings and support, back pillows also are easily transportable with their light weight allowing for use when needed whether you are in your car or sitting in your desk chair at work.

Whether you have moderate back pain or just looking for a little extra relief on your spine, a back support pillow is a considerable option to keep in mind. For the best and largest selection of back support pillows online please visit Sitbetter.com.