Office Chair Buying Guide
Due to the wealth of choice available, we understand that buying an office chair can be a little daunting. With a multitude of variables to consider – from the intended purpose of the product through to the number of adjustable features required – it’s important you select the right chair for you and your home or workplace. This handy buying guide will talk you through the different factors to keep in mind to find an office chair that is best suited to your needs.
The type of chair you choose should ultimately be defined by its intended purpose, including the length of time it will be used for. For homework or surfing the web of an evening, it’s likely it will only be sat on for a couple of hours a day. With occasional usage you can prioritise aesthetics over ergonomics, selecting a model that will compliment the décor of your home over a particularly hardwearing design. However, if you require a chair for all-day use in a home office or business environment, this will mean heavier usage. Not only is it vital you select a durable design to minimise the inevitable wear and tear, but we would also recommend an ergonomically crafted model for enhanced productivity.
A truly ergonomic office chair will be designed to aid you in your working environment. Allowing you to work better and for longer amounts of time, they ultimately result in greater efficiency. Sculpted to the body to support the lumbar region and the natural s-shape of the spine, a good quality seat will encourage correct posture. This will help to prevent neck strain, back pain and a host of other health problems in later life. Promoting good circulation, they will also work to minimise discomfort and fatigue, whilst ample padding will go a long way in delivering a comfortable and cushioned seating experience.
The material used on the seat will affect the overall look of the chair as well as how it feels when you sit on it. Fabric is a popular choice due to its breathability, however mesh is another great option. Not quite so dense, it allows air to circulate to prevent you from overheating. Yet whilst fabric is susceptible to staining, highly durable faux leather delivers a low maintenance, wipe clean surface that’s immensely practical. Alternatively, real leather exudes a luxurious aesthetic with an enduring finish that won’t crack or peel. For more helpful information, take a look at our office chair material information.
The overall seat width is also something to bear in mind, especially in busy or compact office environments. Providing sufficient room, the ideal chair will be wide enough that you don’t feel constrained or hemmed in, yet slim enough to fit between any drawers or under desk storage.
For correct posture, healthy circulation and ergonomic support, your feet should rest flat on the floor and your eyes line up with the top of your computer screen. With a gas lift mechanism you can adjust the height of the seat, depending on the elevation of your desk and screen. This is a great versatile feature when sat at desks of varying heights, or if there will be multiple people using the chair. Each user can tailor the seat to their individual requirements, ensuring comfortable and personalised usage.
Preventing you from twisting your back and causing painful muscle strain, 360-swivel lets you rotate with ease. Delivering premium accessibility, it allows you to reach things around the workspace with relative convenience. Some office chairs also possess a tilt mechanism, enabling variable seating positions for further comfort and support. Once you’ve found the ideal upright position for you, it can be locked into place to ensure that you maintain good posture throughout the day. It's not a problem if numerous people will be using the chair, as this function can also be adjusted for each user.
When seated for prolonged periods of time, it’s especially important the lower part of your back is supported. For sufficient comfort we would suggest a mid-height backrest at the very least, ergonomically sculpted to the natural s-shape curve of the spine to best sustain your lumbar region. For premium support you can opt for an elevated backrest with a cushioned head pillow, which will help to take the strain off your neck and shoulders. Similarly, armrests make for a more relaxing seat by providing a natural resting spot for the arms. Whilst some are padded with foam for extra comfort, these can be a little larger, so we recommend you measure your desk beforehand to ensure they will fit beneath. Others are adjustable, moving up and down, so you can tailor the chair to your individual needs.
The majority of our office chairs sit on a five-spoke wheeled base. These provide optimum mobility and enhanced efficiency, as you glide around the office from desk to printer to filing cabinet. As the human body isn’t designed to be sat stationary for prolonged amounts of time, this movement can aid a comfortable seating position whilst warding off health problems. However it may be that you would prefer an immobile base for added stability. These are also preferable on carpeted floor surfaces, which casters can sometimes leave threadbare. Our collection of fixed height chairs come on trendy cantilever frames that cut a striking silhouette.
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