The Science Behind Office Chairs: Avoid Accidents and Boost Productivity


office-chairIn all the minutes and days you spend at work, you probably don’t get to notice one of the most essential elements that can contribute to your productivity and creativity. Office chairs seem like too commonplace as objects worth discussing, but if you look deeper into the science behind them, you’ll be amazed at their significance in the workplace. It shouldn’t even be a surprise if by the end of this article; you’ve decided to get a new one.

Difference between an office chair and a conventional one

At home, you’ll probably be sitting in a soft couch while you watch TV, and you can spend hours at end until you eventually slouch and fall asleep. Your dining chairs could be made of wood or metal, but they still manage to function well because you won’t even need 30 minutes to finish your food. On the other hand, ergonomic chairs are more commonly used in offices, and it’s not just the fancy name that makes them a preference by office managers.

Schematic diagram of an office chair

The basic parts of a conventional chair feature the legs, the seat itself and the backrest. They come in different forms, but these three are the ones that allow you to sit comfortably. To modify this into an office setting, you put cushions on the seat and the backrest; add wheels to the foot of the legs, and a swivelling mechanism to allow the person to shift the body to a different direction. Control levers are also added so you can adjust the height and the inclination of the chair.

Foster proper posture

Each component of the office chair will force your body to position itself in proper working posture. The feet should be planted firmly on the ground. If you are forced to tiptoe, then you should use the levers to lower the height. The front of the seat shouldn’t be pressing on the back of the knees, as this blocks the circulation of blood. Your back should be straight, wherein the spine is at a slight angle away from the table. The backrest can be tilted so you can adjust the inclination as well. From time to time you reach out for documents and open drawers, and this is made possible without leaving the chair. Just swivel it to the direction you need to face.

Picking the right office chair

Home depots and second-hand furniture shops are filled with assets taken from old offices. If you happen to acquire a chair that is of questionable quality, you’re putting yourself in danger of accidentally falling and injuring yourself. It’s even more dangerous when kids or seniors use the chair. You need to make sure that the ergonomic chair you purchase is durable and can withstand large amounts of body weight. Check the legs and see if it’s made of brittle material. The wheels should also be secure and not easily removed.

Injuries from office chairs happen more often than you may know or think. In fact, a writer from an overseas site actually fell from a chair six times before management decided to do away with cheap options. In the interest of safety and comfort, take note of what has been mentioned above to boost productivity and make your office an ergonomically sound environment.

Christopher Samson

Written by Christopher Samson

Christopher Allen Samson is passionate about utilizing technology to improve well-being and the office environment. He does research on current tech trends and analyzes how they can be applied to simplify our lives.

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