Ergonomic Office Chair Principles
When choosing your next home office work chair, Dr. Nik, suggests following these chair principles to find the right fit.
- Good lumbar support
* This hugs your natural lower back curve preventing you from slouching and rounding it out.
* It must fit your body height and shape, or be adjustable in order to fit your body.
- Adjustable seat height AND seat angle
* Ideally want your hips a bit higher than your knees, and the seat angled downward a bit, which opens up your hips thereby putting less strain on your lower back.
* You also want the height to allow your forearms to be level with the desk surface.
* If when you are sitting at this height, your feet are not flat on the floor; you'll want to get a foot rest.
- Adjustable armrests height (unless it's just right as is for you)
* You want your forearms resting so your shoulders are relaxed. As opposed to being supported to a height that your shoulders are shrugged up by your ears.
* However, note that if the arm rests do not allow you to get close enough to your desk (because they hit the desk surface) - this could lead to postural problems when you need to be really close.
* That being said, it's a good idea to scoot your bum forward from time to time and change your sitting posture - so if the amount of time you need to spend close to your desk is less than 50%, I wouldn't worry about this. If you spend most of your time very close to your desk surface, you may want to not have arm rests at all.
- Appreciate seat size
* You want 2-3 fingers width between the edge of the seat and the back of your knees - too much more or less will affect your overall comfort level.
* Some chairs are just a bit too 'springy' or floppy - you want it to be sturdy; this includes the back rest, so it supports you up rather than giving way and allowing you to lean back far.
- Ability to "unlock" the base of your seat so you can lean way back and have your feet up on the desk.
* It's good to have a change in posture every 30min so that you share the load of sitting posture on varying muscles; having this option is a nice way to change your posture when you just need to be reading off the screen.
Dr. Nik Dukovac
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