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office ergonomics

  • How to Use An Ergonomic Office Chair Correctly

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    Ergonomic

    Ergonomic chairs support your legs and back in order to provide you with optimal posture. Sitting improperly for long hours will place strain on the spine and your legs, which can cause pain and discomfort. Sit improperly for too long, and it can eventually lead to chronic back pain and other health issues. Ergonomic chairs are specifically designed to minimize strain on your body and prevent pain from occurring, as well as other health related problems commonly associated with poor sitting posture. Ergonomic chairs will only prevent strain if properly adjusted to your body and used correctly. Improper use of even the top of the line ergonomic chairs will mitigate their effectiveness. When you purchase an ergonomic office chair for the first time, getting the chair to properly adjust to you may seem like a complicated task but all it takes is a little knowledge on what to expect.

    When you receive your ergonomic chair, be sure to familiarize yourself with all the special features and functions of your chair. Prior to purchasing your chair would be the best time to find out which ergonomic functions are a necessity for your chair and which you can live without. Some office chair websites will provide you with information about how different ergonomic features work and more importantly, what they are exactly. There are sure to be many features included in your chair that you have never heard before, and it is important to know how each works so you can get the most out of your chair. Most ergonomic chairs will have several levers or buttons that adjust features such as the chair height or arm height.

    If you will be using your ergonomic chair on carpeted floors, be sure to also purchase a chair mat as well. It is crucial to remember that even though you are purchasing an ergonomic chair, you will also need to move around throughout the day to have good circulation. Rolling a chair across carpet can be difficult and get stuck without the use of a chair mat. Dragging or pushing your chair across carpet while sitting in the chair can produce unnecessary strain on your body and the chair.

    To make sure you are getting proper blood flow through your legs, you will need to adjust the seat height of your ergonomic chair using the appropriate button or lever. Most of the time this lever can be found on your right hand side and is one of the most clearly marked functions on the chair. You should adjust the height to allow your feet to rest flat on the floor without any strain on your legs. Your knees should be bent at a 90 degree angle and your seat should be about a half an inch away from the back of your knees to avoid putting too much pressure.

    Ergonomic

    If your chair comes with lumbar support (most ergonomic chairs do), be sure to align the lumbar support to the position that is most comfortable and in line with your lower back. For some chairs this may mean raising or lowering the back to match up with your height. In other chairs the lumbar support will be adjustable, and you should be able to simply move it up or or down to conform to the natural curvature of your spine. In advanced ergonomic chairs, an optional feature that can be purchased is inflatable lumbar support, which allows the user to "pump" up the volume of lumbar support they would like to receive.

    Perhaps the most important concept to keep in mind when using your ergonomic chair is to make adjustments when necessary. What feels good today may not feel right a few months down the line and you may need to adjust your chair to meet your new needs. If your office chair comes with armrests, make sure to adjust these often as well. Poorly positioned arms can lead to strain and in worse case scenarios carpal tunnel syndrome. One adjustment you will want to avoid adjusting frequently is the height of the chairs; this tends to wear out the chair quicker. With all this in mind, take some time out of your day the next time you sit in your office chair to make sure you are properly adjusted and getting all you can out of your ergonomic office chair. To see all of Sitbetter's quality ergonomic chairs please click here.

  • Men's Journal | Seats of Power Article

    If anyone happ

    ened to read the Men's Journal | February 2010 | Volume 19 | Number 1 issue with Mel Gibson on the cover, you might have noticed that there was an article titled "Ergonomic desk chairs: The best buys". The article explains that 2,000 hours were spent testing ergonomic chairs to help others find the ideal chair suitable for an eight-hour day. The article features 9 ergonomic chairs that Men's Journal believes to be the best of the best. Of the 9 chairs that were featured in the article, I was happy to see that Sitbetter sells 3 of the 9 mentioned!

    The first chair mentioned was the Evolution Exercise Ball Chair by Posture Perfect, which is one of our top sellers on Sitbetter. The Evolution Chair promotes a balanced posture - a vital role in your overall health! Another benefit of the ball chair is that it strengthens your core while you are working; just think working while getting a work out at the same time!

    Good posture and core strength are the best insurance against back injury - the Evolution Exercise Ball Chair embodies those principles. While use of the Evolution Ball Chair began with dentists, the benefits are obvious for anyone looking for core improvement. Either by simply sitting correctly, or by taking time to do simple exercises throughout the day, the Evolution Ball Chair has helped lower pain sufferers in all offices.

    The reviewers in this particular article gave the Evolution Ball Chair a 7/10 based on the fact that while some definitely loved the ball chair others were not a big fan of it which can be said for almost any chair. Available for $139 at Sitbetter.com

    The second chair that was reviewed for the article that is readily available on Sitbetter is the Humanscale Freedom, more expensive in price but you will also get a lot more out of this chair.

    With Freedom, the knobs, levers and locks of current-generation task chairs have been replaced by intelligent mechanisms that automatically support the body as it moves from task to task. By minimizing the need for manual controls, Freedom maximizes natural, spontaneous movement, which is essential for a healthy body and a comfortable day's work. Freedom's many features can be enjoyed with virtually no effort.

    Humanscale's Liberty and Freedom chairs contain 54%-85% recycled content ,roughly 50% more recycled content than most competing chairs, and are made predominately of 100% recycled and recyclable aluminum. Specifically designed to weigh less and use fewer parts and manufacturing processes than similar designs in the same class, all Humanscale products can help projects earn valuable points toward LEED-CI Certification.

    Winner of 10 international design awards for its many revolutionary features and unparalleled ease of use, Freedom's ground-breaking design is the gold standard by which other task chairs are judged.

    The reviewers in this article gave the Freedom a rating of 8/10, the second best rating of all chairs mentioned in the article. "Functional, comfortable, technical, sure, but few office chairs are this stylish," writes the author Martin Mulkeen. The Freedom definitely is stylish but it also provides proper lumbar and shoulder support as well. Available at Sitbetter.com for $1129.

    The third product that was reviewed that is available at Sitbetter is the Kore Ergonomic Rocking stool, a fan favorite for its rocking capabilities (no pun intended).

    Taking stool technology to another level, the Kore™ Stool embodies an ergonomic feature long touted by ergonomists as a bedrock of proper ergonomics: Continual motion of your body while at work.

    The Kore™ Stool allows the user to flex side to side and front to back - with its patented anti-tip system and gently rounded ergonomic base, the stool allows you to move and flex without falling or leaving your seat.

    The Kore™ Stool great for exercising your legs, back, and abdominal muscles, while also relieving and preventing soreness and stiffness!

    The reviewers of this article gave the Kore stool a rating of 4/10, which is pretty low from other testimonials and reviews I have read on this chair. "Some testers initially relished the Kore's challenge of sitting properly without a seat back or stable platform (since the stool is designed to wobble)." writes the author. The Kore stool definitely takes some getting used to but it is fun to sit in and will force you to sit up and use your core. The Kore stool is available for $99 at Sitbetter.com

    If you are looking for a great ergonomic chair, I have to agree with the reviewers and say that these are three of the best out there. While some like these chairs more than others, they all have one possess one common factor: they are ergonomically correct and will help you avoid experiencing pain in the back, neck, and shoulders. There are many other great ergonomic chairs available at Sitbetter that were not mentioned as well if these options don't suit you. If you need help picking out your next ergonomic chair visit Sitbetter.com and feel free to call our toll free number 1-866-311-9421 if you have any questions!

  • Ergonomic Chairs For the Smaller Stature - Petite Office Chairs

    Ergonomic seating is becoming more prominent than ever before and more people are searching around forchairs that are going to contour to their body type. It is essential to find a chair that is going to fit you properly in order to sit ergonomically correct. Sitting in a chair which is too large for you can cause posture problems, pain, or discomfort, so choosing a chair with the right dimensions is important whether you are of average build or bigger and taller than the average.

    Most ergonomic chairs are built to adjust to a typical body height and weight, but what about those of us that are smaller than the average user? Some indications that a chair is too tall are that it prevents the user’s feet from resting flat on the ground, arms of the chair are too high, has a lumbar support or headrest that does not sit in the right position, or the seat is too deep. I myself, am 5’2” and always have a difficult time finding things that will fit me properly whether it be jeans or even office chairs. I’ve come to find the solution to this problem is simple- a petite office chair.

    A petite chair is an ergonomic chair that is specifically designed to meet the needs of people under 5’4” and weighing less than 300 pounds. Petite chairs come fully equipped with a seat depth up to 18”, a smaller back size, and have a good amount of ergonomic adjustments to ensure proper comfort, no matter your stature. Petite users will be able to sit ergonomically correct and have adjustments tailored to smaller users with an adequate seat depth.

    Unfortunately for those of us with smaller stature most petite office chairs are not readily available at a typical office furniture store or computer supply store. Most need to be specially ordered, and can easily be done so by ordering online through an office chair retailer.

  • Holiday Gift Guide For His Office

    Feel like Christmas and the holidays always seem to sneak up on you at the last minute? One minute you are enjoying the summer sunshine and the next it seems to fast forward to Christmas. Instead of worrying about the hassle of making your way through the crowded aisles of the mall or camping out on the street before the big sale, Sitbetter has created our very own holiday gift guide for the 2009 season. The best part of all is you can get all your shopping done while sitting on your computer in your pajamas! So take a look at some of our top picks for our holiday gift guide for his office.

    A high end ergonomic office chair designed to provide the best possible extended seating comfort and support. With its patented, fully adjustable back support system integrated within its knitted mesh back, it provides a customized fit for any user. The CPOD is an employee favorite here at Sitbetter and along with comfort it is also a pretty stylish chair.

    Available arm options include:Task 2 arms- adjustable 4" height, Multifunctional arms- adjustable 4" height and 4" width, pivots and slides side to side and front to back, Twister Arms- adjustable 4" height and rotates 360 degrees.

    Price: $549

    Find out more!

    Personally my favorite chair offered on site. Inspired by the human vertebrae, the Verte combines ergonomics, form and function to produce the ultimate in seating posture and comfort. A decade in the making, the Verte was created by a team of engineers, designers, and ergonomists, and is truly one of a kind. Sit in it once, and you'll never settle for anything less.

    The patented back is built with 11 torsion spring-loaded joints that take an exact spine impression, which can be locked, in place at the touch of a lever. All you need to do is flip a lever, put each 'rib' right where you want it, and flip the lever again to lock. If you need a little more pressure at one spot, simply push that one 'rib' in a bit further, or out if you need less pressure!

    Price: $1135

    Find out more!

    The future is Ergohuman designed and made with the total comfort of human-kind in mind.

    Esthetics, form and function allow this series to utilize a synchro tilt mechanism with infinite lock, sliding seat, pneumatic height adjustment, headrest option all in one very unique chair.

    The Ergohuman comes in leather as well as a variety of 6 different colored fabric options. Mesh back and mesh seats are also available. Or if you want your chair to have a leather seat and mesh back, that is possible as well.

    No matter what color/material Ergohuman ordered all come fully equipped with a seat slider, synchro-tilt, back height and angle adjustable, seat height and depth adjustable, tilt tension, and lock control.

    Price: $599

    Find out more!

    The Fluid by Allseating is one chair that suits everyone, in any work environment.

    Stream-lined base design, stylish silver accents with breathable, elastomeric, tight weave mesh. Allseating's number one selling chair offers comfort and versatility.

    This Greenguard certified ergonomic mesh chair brings ultimate comfort and style to any office area - managers, executives, and conference rooms alike.

    Price: $529

    Find out more!

    BOSS' B7402 is beautifully upholstered with ultra soft and durable Caressoft upholstery. Executive high-back styling with extra lumbar support, deluxe knee tilt control, padded armrests covered with Caressoft upholstery.

    Solid 27-inch nylon base with casters, Hooded double wheel casters for easy movement, upright locking position, pneumatic gas lift provide instant height adjustment, adjustable tilt tension assures the right reclining tension.

    At a very affordable price, this chair is not only stylish but also comfortable enough to sit in for long periods of time.

    Price: $189

    Find out more!

    The La-Z-Boy Sintas was designed with an anthropometric frame structure based on the human form. This generously proportioned chair features wide graceful arms and deep quilted u-shaped upholstered seat and back for lasting comfort and support.

    The Sintas offers a styling and comfort for which La-Z-Boy is known for, at a very comfortable price. Built with quality in mind, the Sintas will last up to ten years. Our experts who have sat in this chair believe it to be one of the softest and plush chairs they have ever sat in.

    Price: $729

    Find out more!

    The TL01 by ESI with its sleek 22 inch arm, is perfectly suited for smaller work environments. The single arm design and easy to reach handle provides quick and easy adjustment and the heavy 4lb free standing table base insures stability. Sleek and stylish personal task lights are an important part of any workstation. Whether they are for use on the desk-top or under the cabinet, proper lighting is a must for any workstation user. See work in a whole new light and reduce your eye strain.

    Price: $69

    Find out more!

    The most popular monitor arm to date, the M7 Monitor Arm by Humanscale combines style with functionality and ease of use.

    Featuring a cylinder rated to hold monitors up to 28 lbs (15-23"), the dual extension system allows for maximum desk space saving and flexibility in how you position your monitor. With the solidly constructed die cast aluminum frame and an easy to install grommet mount, clamp mount, or direct to desk mount, the M7 will be installed and improving your workspace ergonomics in no time.

    Price: $209

    Find out more!

    Anji Mountain Bamboo Rug Co.'s Original "Natural" and "Dark Cherry" Bamboo Tri-Fold Office Chair Mats meld beauty, style and function to create an alternative to the bland, utilitarian vinyl chair mat. There is no company carrying this product in the marketplace currently! These Bamboo Tri-Fold Office Chair Mats are incredibly durable and will add an elegant touch to any office or home office setting. Furthermore, these mats are easy to ship and easy to transport. No assembly required!

    Price: Starting at $136

    Find out more!

    This sturdy and adjustable keyboard tray features a 25" wide platform that allows placing the keyboard and mouse right next to each other!

    Easily adjustable to accommodate different users and allows for right or left-handed users! Includes mouse pads, mouse guards, cord management clip and detachable palm rest.

    Price: $169

    Find out more!

    This revolutionary USB powered drink cooling / warming device allows you to easily adjust the temperature of your drink holder - you can either keep your beverage at a cool 45°F, or switch it over for a piping hot cup of Joe. Requiring power from only your USB port, the Beverage Chiller is perfect for portability and transportation. The Beverage Cooler is so versatile, it works with any device that has a USB Port including computers, gaming consoles, and even some cable boxes!

    Price: $19.99

    Find out more!

    Have you even experienced dry hands, dry mouths, dry skin, etc. in dry seasons or even in an air-conditioned rooms and offices? This is a quite unpleasant problem not only for women but men also. Thus, you need a USB Mini-Cool Aroma Humidifer! It generates cool, moisturizing steam using safe ultrasonic waves so as to help relieve dry skin, eyes, mouth and throat. It makes breathing more comfortable.

    Price: $39.00

    Find out more!

    Shirt maker Pink has launched yet another way to ensure your iPod nano is always close to your chest, in the shape of the Pink Commuter tie.

    According to Pink “It's the latest solution for today's busy man who needs to carry more than one gadget at any one time”.

    Pink's Commuter tie features a pocket on the reverse of the tie which will hold an iPod Nano (and we presume Shuffle as well) safely and securely whilst allowing him to have his hands free to grab his morning coffee. Aside from the pocket, Pink has included an extra fabric loop to keep wires out of sight and close to your body.

    Find out more!

  • 7 Reasons Why it is Important to Take Breaks at Work

    Do you ever find yourself working for hours on end sitting in an office chair without getting up to take a break? This is not uncommon, in fact most people either do not know or forget to take breaks when working long hours sitting in one position. Whether you work full time or part-time from home or in a traditional workplace setting, it is still important to take breaks. Taking breaks while working long hours is essential and crucial to your health.

    Employers may need to think about the environment in which their work takes place in order to develop an adequate plan for allowing time for breaks. For jobs which are full time, two shorter breaks is often adequate. People who work behind a computer all day should take a break every hour or so and be able to get up and move round. This enables them from being in a seated posture all day staring at the screen. People who work in highly repetitive jobs should be offered more frequent shorter breaks in order to prevent boredom which can result in a decrease in productivity, a decrease in proficiency, and less mistakes. There are many reasons why regular breaks are important; here are just a few.

    1.   Circulation is impaired by prolonged sitting: When you sit in static postures where you are not     moving, circulation can be impeded. When blood flow to an active muscle is impaired, the oxygen supply is diminished, which over time can impair muscle function. The feeling of fatigue often is related to circulation and blood supply.
    2   Working on the computer distorts the awareness of time: When working for long hours on the computer most people do not take breaks frequently enough, nor do they realize how much time has passed since they began working. An easy way to eliminate this problem is to make sure people take regular breaks by using time reminders.
    3.   Burnout: People who work continually face complete burnout and what good is a burnt out employee? Physical exhaustion can lead to problems such as chronic headaches, fatigue, inability to concentrate, and trouble sleeping at night. Even if all you take is 15 minutes during an 8 hour work day, you can use that time to refresh yourself and feel more energized the rest of the work day.
    4   Productivity: Many studies have revealed that workers who take breaks are dramatically more productive during the day as opposed to those who do not. After a break, your performance levels increase dramatically so that you can tackle tasks again with renewed vigor and finish them accurately. Mistakes are also made more when you do not refresh your mind and body.
    5.   Heart Risks: After researchers in Finland conducted a study on a group of nearly 800 workers over the span of 28 years, they found that subjects who failed to find time to recover from their workweek were more likely to eventually die of cardiovascular disease. If people are not able to relax periodically, plaques can build up in their arteries which contribute to potential heart attacks and or strokes.
    6.   Stress: Focusing on a tedious task for too long can easily lead to physical and mental stress. Stress as most know, can lead to serious implications for our health. Common consequences of stress include high blood pressure, high blood sugar, poor fitness, low resistance to viruses, and serious illnesses. If something that is being worked on becomes too stressful, it is best to take a break from it and resume the work once calm and collected.
    7.   Repetitive Stress Injuries: Especially for those that sit at a desk all day staring at a computer, it is easy to develop repetitive stress injuries such as eyestrain from staring at a computer screen too long. Carpal Tunnel is also another injury which can develop from spending too much time typing and not typing in the proper position. Sitting in an office chair too long generally leads to wanting to fidget and move posture, most of the time into improper posture. By not sitting correctly and having adequate lumbar support, back and neck pain is sure to develop.

    When starting your new routine of taking breaks, start small with 5 minute breaks and work your way up in about a week or two. Taking breaks at work cannot be considered being lazy, especially when you take short meaningful ones. There is no harm in trying, but there is harm in not trying.

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