Posts Tagged ‘lower back pain’

How to Choose the Right Backrest for Your Office Chair

You have come to the realization that it is time to purchase a new office chair, but with the large variety of options available it can become overwhelming to determine which chair will wor

k best for you. Although it may seem like a simple purchase to make, there are many components on an office chair that should be considered prior to purchasing. The four main parts of an office chair are the seat, the armrests, the mechanism, and the backrest. All of these parts combined can lead to a healthy and comfortable sitting experience, but if one is overlooked or ignored it can also lead to pain and discomfort. Perhaps the one part of an office chair that is most often overlooked is the backrest.

A good backrest will provide the support needed to keep you sitting comfortably for extended periods of time. When determining which backrest is best suited for you it is important to keep a few things in mind. The first aspect to consider is if you have any prior medical conditions that affect how you sit throughout the work day. Many workers in the United States have sat in a cheap office chair that does not properly fit them for most of their careers which inadvertently leads to experiencing back pain and aches throughout the work day. Others have suffered from injuries or accidents that also affect their sitting experience. Luckily, with the vast assortment of ergonomic chairs available there are may different models and designs specifically tailored for all different types of injuries and back pains.

Air Lumbar Support

For those that suffer from lower back pain, it is best to find a backrest that is going to provide lumbar support. The most common type of lumbar support found on many different office chair models is a contoured backrest. The back forms an “S” shape which molds to the natural shape of the spine. It is crucial to find a backrest that can be adjusted in height in order to properly position the lumbar support to meet your body’s specific needs. Another unique option that is available for lower back pain sufferers is an inflatable lumbar support, which is a small air pump inserted into the lower part of the backrest that can be inflated or deflated depending on the level of support that is needed. This option is available in high-end ergonomic chairs.

For those that suffer from upper back pain and shoulder pain it is advisable to find a backrest that is going to provide full back support. An office chair that is considered to have a high back will support both the upper back and shoulders. Chairs that are deemed to have a mid back or low back are a good option for those that do not suffer from upper back pain but should be avoided by those that do. Another option for those that need extra neck support and like to lean back in their chairs is a headrest.

Whether you suffer from upper back pain, lower back pain, or no back pain at all, the backrest is one of the most important aspects of any office chair and should be taken into consideration when searching for your next new office chair.
To view SitBetter’s wide selection of ergonomic office chairs please click here!


ergonomic-chairs


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!

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.

Stocks suck, my savings are gone, but my back pain from my chair isn’t…

So you don’t have much money to buy a Aeron, or Leap chair, or some other “name” chair…50% of the cost of those chairs is the brand.  You’re paying for the brand – not to say that these chairs aren’t all they’re cracked up to be, but simply saying that if you cannot afford them, there ARE options out there to get yourself a comfortable chair at a comfortable price.

Now before you think this is a rag on high priced chairs, let me say this:  The majority are actually very comfortable, and do justify their price tag.  The majority.  But let’s face it, this isn’t exactly the best time to part with $1000.000 for a chair.  (Idea:  You know all those banks that went broke, well, I know for a fact they spent lots o’ cash on pricey chairs…maybe you can pick one up on Craigslist for free…)

Anyways, here few resources we put together on the site here to answer your call -See our recommended chairs for back pain here; also see our entire selection of ergonomic chairs here (you can use the advanced browse to narrow your options…)-.  Most chairs from Office Star, Matrex series, are also relatively comfortable.  If you are looking for a good leather chair that is relatively ergonomic, look at the Mayline 9414.  It’s got some nice ergo features, including an inflatable lumbar, and the leather is nice.  Mayline is a very reputable company too, albeit shipping it takes longer than we like.

Other, less expensive options to give you back pain relief can come in the form of some accessories.  Asprin, for one. We like Aleve (registered trademark of a large, wealthy company).  Bayer is good too, though cause it gives you heart health as well.  The ticker is important.  But take a look at products from companies like ObusForme, which are independent back support cushions.  Companies like these manufacturer products focused on providing support for the back.  They do the research.  We try the stuff out, which is why we endorse it.  These cushions are made to fit the backrest of any chair, and could be the solution your lumbar needs.

So these are less expensive options for your current chair, which could end up being the solution you need.  Also remember to stretch often and move around often.  Cool? Cool.

It’s simply not just the office chair…

Well hello again!
In the hunt for a good chair for you, one thing most people don’t consider is that how they work at the desk means they could be sitting on a rock, for all the good the chair is going to do you.
I’ve seen some rather…. interesting search terms on google- chairs for short, petite chairs, chairs for petite people, chairs for small, chairs for tiny people- you get the point?
If you’re not that tall, try using a foot rest. The type that move are great, allowing you actually move your legs while seated increase blood flow and reduce pressure points. In fact, had a 5’2″ customer in this morning, the second thing I showed her was a foot rest and she was amazed at the difference in how she sat.
Think about it, when you’re shorter, the weight of your legs is not supported, so they are actually pulling your body out from the back of the chair. When your legs are supported, you end up sitting back into the chair as you’re supposed to do. It really does feel good, try it!
Here’s a picture of the Humanscale foot rest (commercial plug- :-P ) available at SitBetter.com
 


Some like how this rolls easily, but I’ve found that is not a universal preference. Sitting in a chair with wheels on very thin carpet, floor mat or hardwood floor, some people find themselves actually moving about a bit much.
This is not a problem in areas with thicker carpet, since the chair does not tend to move easily.
If you feel that may be an issue for you, try this sort. It does not move as easily, and there are little rubber stoppers on the legs to keep it stable, in fact.
Again, the main purpose of these is to give the feet a platform on which to support. There are many out there from which to choose, just consider that it’s going to help adapt your environment to your body type, which is a far better thing than trying to force your body to adapt to your environment!
For more information (of course, another crass commercial plug!), contact me here or at Sitbetter.com!