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.
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!
Check out these couple of external lumbar supports. You can put them on your chair and have good back support without having to shell out hundreds for a brand new chair. Granted, some people might need a new chair, but if you are a user with a budget, you might want to try one of these out first.
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.
This is my painful area when sitting down. Doesn’t flare up all the time, but sometimes. So I have to be real careful as to what chairs I choose. I normally need an adjustable lumbar support, that pushes into my lumbar region, into the concave of my lower back.
What do I do to prevent recurring back pain? I get up and stretch a little bit more than normal. People may think I’m strange, but I’d rather be strange than hurting. Also, I have a keyboard tray and monitor arm, as well as the aforementioned chair with adjustable active lumbar support. (It is actually mesh back, but that is really a personal preference.) For me, the deal breaker is lumbar support. If you have upper back issues, that’s a different story. For some chairs that I have tried out and do recommend, check out our back pain page…Tried and true.
FYI, I have not tried the inflatable lumbar supports, such as in the MAY9414AG, however, we have had clients that do love it. (We are getting a sample in this week, so I will be trying it soon.) Check out our editors review on it next week.
Rock on, sit right.