What features should a good office chair have?

William Adams
 min read

What features should a good office chair have in order to avoid physical ailments and annoying continuous or stabbing pain?

What features should a good office chair haveIf you’ve been parked in a chair for eight hours (or more), every day, in an uncomfortable chair, chances are that your body is very unhappy about it and protesting loudly too.

We’re sure that you know that your physical health is at risk if your chair isn’t made for you and your needs.

A chair that is not ergonomically designed is asking for trouble.

You’ll be plagued with a host of conditions such as fatigue and various aches and pains, which start from your neck and travel all over your body.

What features should a good office chair have? Introduction

If you work in an office, you’re probably recognizing all the symptoms.

It hurts, you’re stiff, and your legs are tired because you didn’t move around enough.

Why, we hear you ask. Well, it’s all due to bad ergonomics, lack of posture awareness and an inadequate chair.

You need to choose the perfect ergonomic office chair if your job keeps you sitting for extended lengths of time.

Features to look for in a good office chair

Here are some tips on what to try to find in a good ergonomic chair, with a few of the best features of a suitable office chair:

Comfort of the seat

If you sit on something akin to concrete all day, then you know you’re going to end up in a bad place.

An ergonomic work chair will have just the right support for your back/buttocks/hips.

You shouldn’t sink in it like a cloud, but on the other hand, it shouldn’t be so hard that it triggers those awful niggling pains.

Tip: Read How do you soothe a sore bum from sitting? for more information about ergonomic office chairs for large people who experience pain in the buttocks.

There’s a massive preference for an office chair with a mesh weave.

The material allows for better air circulation, so it’s cooler, unlike other materials such as vinyl.

Height of the seat

A good office chair should be easily adjustable with a pneumatic adjustment lever, with a height of 15 inches (max 22 inches) from the floor.

This height will allow you to keep your upper legs parallel to the floor and your feet flat on the ground.

You will also have your arms level with your working area.

Having (adjustable) armrests

Armrests reduce the pressure on your lower back.

It’s even better with adjustable width and height to reduce neck and shoulder stress and avoid carpal tunnel syndrome.

The armrest should be broad, adequately cushioned, and of course, comfortable.

Materials used in the production of the office chair

The best chairs are made from robust and long-lasting material. They also need adequate padding on the seat and lower back.

Look for breathable fabrics, and you can’t go wrong.

Features of the seat area

The lower area of your spine has a natural curve.

Extended sitting tends to flatten this curve and place abnormal stress on this sensitive area.

Your weight needs to be uniformly dispersed on the seat, so you’ll want to look out for rounded edges.

It should extend 1 or 2 inches (or more) from both sides of your hips as this is usually the most comfortable.

Try to find a chair with a seat that can tilt forward or backward to reduce pressure on your legs.

Good resistance against toppling over

Get an office chair with wheels that swivel. This will prevent too much twisting your own spine.

If you’re scared of tipping over, a 5-point base is what you need.

Strong casters will allow a stable movement, even when the chair is reclined or locked into various positions.

A sturdy office chair with sufficient load bearing capacity is a must if you happen to be overweight or tall.

Read our buying guide Best desk chairs for plus-size people to discover more details and information.

Having good (adjustable) back support

You’ll find backrests can either be separate or combined with the seat, but both should be adjustable with regards to angle and height for optimal lumbar support.

Backrests should be 11 to 20 inches wide and designed to support your lower spine.

The backrest should move forward and backward with a combined backrest and seat and have a locking mechanism to hold it in place when you’ve found the proper position.

Choose sensibly and sit conveniently

While you may have the luxury of choosing the right chair at work, you really need to learn how to use it to make it work for you.

On the other hand, if you can choose your chair, make sure it’s the best one you can get on your budget.

Superb ergonomics are vital to your health, so pick wisely.

Take a look at the following purchasing guide for workplace chairs for a large person.

What features should a good office chair have? Conclusion about good office chairs and their features

A suitable ergonomic chair will give you great benefits when it comes to posture, and, ultimately, your health and productivity will thank you for it too.

Please ensure that the chair you’re using addresses the above functions.

Keep the following in mind:

Having an ergonomic office chair does not guarantee the proper posture as you have to take care of that yourself. So it’s still up to you.

About William Adams

I’m an engineer and a happy plus-size individual myself. I love to blog online if I can have a positive impact on the lives of others. I help other plus-size people with in-depth product guides to make shopping for products and services less stressful in their busy lives. Read More