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Choosing the right office chair

Choosing the right office chair

Wednesday 21st March 2018

ow many hours a week do you spend sitting at your desk?  If you’re anything like the majority of desk-based workers in the UK, then it’s more than 38 and possibly as many as 45*.  Surprisingly, many of our clients tell us they’ve put up with being uncomfortable at their desk for a long time before they have made the decision to invest in a really good office chair.

Choosing the right office chair can transform your day; you’ll find it not only more comfortable to work once you’re sitting in the right chair, but also that after work you are less stiff. Most of our clients tell us the first difference they feel is the improvement in their lower back.

We’d always encourage you to try plenty of different chairs before selecting the one for you and following these key pointers will help you with your selection:

Get the measurements of your desk and make sure you try the chairs at the right height to fit underneath with leg-room.  We know most office chairs are height-adjustable, but if your feet don’t comfortably sit on the floor when the chair is set at the right desk height, you’ll soon find you are uncomfortable.

Try really sitting in the chairs you try; not sitting bolt upright as it you’re proving what great posture you have, but as if you’re talking on the telephone, or watching a video on your lunch-break.  How comfortable is it now?  Of course, we also recommend you try sitting at a desk, with a keyboard, and seeing how it feels to do your work.

Try chairs with and without arms before you make a decision.  Many of us think we know which option suits us, but trying out both can change that view.  We’re often told by clients that they’ve found their new choice has helped them with posture, so be open minded and always ask if the arms can be removed or added for your choice.  Remember too, if you decide on arms, you’ll need to be sure you can get close enough to your desk (those measurements from our first tips are needed again).

How adjustable is it?  This is a very important consideration whether you’re taller, thinner, larger or smaller than ‘average’  (good modern design knows there is no such thing of course) you want to make sure your chair can really adapt to your size.  Can it be raised and lowered, are the arms able to be set at different widths and if it tilts, are the angles right for you? 

Fabric isn’t just a matter of looks, it’s also about comfort and practicality.  The choice of which material you sit on can be impacted by climate, the temperature in your office and even whether the sun shines on it when you’re not in it.  Try sitting on leather, suede or wool before choosing these options in particular, as they’re not for everyone.

Once you’ve found the right chair, make sure you spend time setting it up properly at your desk.  If you’ve invested in a good chair, it’s worth taking the time to do this.  Then enjoy your chair and remember how important it is to get up out of it regularly and move around – the good news is you’ll get to sit in that fabulous chair all over again.

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