Here are the seven most important things to look for in an office chair for optimum health and comfort. But first, let’s start with who needs a good-quality chair in the first place.
Who Needs a Good Home Office Chair?
You need a good home office chair if you get lower back, shoulder, hip or neck pain, have bad circulation or varicose veins, have a bad posture, or tire easily when you work. In fact, choosing a good-quality office chair can lessen or prevent all of these issues.
Even if you don’t have any of the above issues but you sit working in your home office for hours at a time, you need a good office chair. A proper office chair will make your work much more enjoyable and productive because your body is comfortable so your mind can get on with things. You also won’t suffer from aches and pains at the end of each day.
Office chairs have come a long way over the past few years. Many studies have been done and these have led to the design of “ergonomic” chairs. A good ergonomic chair supports your body and posture while you sit, for maximum comfort and overall wellness.
What Should You Be Looking for in a Home Office Chair?
Here are the seven key elements to look for in a good ergonomic home office chair:
It’s important to be able to adjust the height of a home office chair. The optimum height for an office chair depends on your body height and the height of your desk, which is why you need to able to adjust the chair’s height. As a general rule, a comfortable seat for most people is about 15 to 21 inches off the ground.
A good home office chair comes with a pneumatic lever that adjusts the height of the chair. A pneumatic lever works with compressed air or gas to adjust the chair’s height before it is locked into place.
To adjust an office chair’s height with a pneumatic lever, simply pull on the lever and sit on the seat to make the chair lower or get off the chair to make the chair rise higher on its own.
To get the correct height for your home office chair, sit down on the chair. Adjust the height so that your feet are flat on the floor, your thighs are horizontal to the ground, and your arms are in line with your desk. It’s important to keep your knees bent at a 90-degree angle, to prevent swelling in the legs.
If you have your chair at the lowest height and your feet aren’t sitting flat on the floor, use a footrest for support.
A Reclining Seat Back
A reclining seat is one that tilts back so you aren’t forced to sit up straight all the time, which is unnatural for your spine.
The back of a good home office chair reclines, so you can set it at a comfortable angle and avoid back pain. Researchers have found that the most comfortable angle is a 13-15 degree backward decline.
Not only should the back rest be able to recline, but it should also be wide enough and be made of the right kind of material.
A backrest should be about 19 inches wide. This makes it wide enough for most people’s backs, without being squashed in.
Choosing a chair with a padded or soft material covering will make your chair more comfortable, but warm. If your home office tends to get hot inside, go for an office chair with a mesh material on the back rest that will keep your back (and body) cooler on warm days.
Adjustable Lumbar Support
The lumbar region is the lower part of your back and spine, and one of its main purposes is to support your body weight. A good office chair supports this lumbar area, so that you don’t get lower back pain from sitting in the wrong position and putting too much pressure on your lower back.
When choosing an office chair, look for a chair with an inward curve where your lower back sits. If you can afford it, choose a chair that has adjustable lumbar support so you can change the angle of the curve to what’s most comfortable for your spine’s curvature.
Armrests are there to provide support. They support your arms and posture while sitting in the chair, and give you something to lean on when standing up from the chair. Choose an office chair that has comfortable, padded armrests that are wide enough and strong enough to support you.
When testing out an office chair for comfort, make sure that the fleshy parts of your forearms rest on the armrests and that there is enough space between the armrests and the back of the chair for your elbows to sit freely. Your elbow has a nerve in it that is easily irritated if it touches an armrest for a long period of time.
You also want to check the height of the armrests to make sure they will slide under your desk. If your armrests are too high, you’ll never be able to pull your chair in under the desk.
A Deep Seat Depth
A good office chair is one that you can sit back in. If the chair is deep enough, you should be able to fit 2 to 3 fingers between the end of the chair and the back of your knees while your back rests comfortably on the backrest.
The recommended depth for an office chair is about 19″, depending on how long your legs are and if the seat is adjustable.
An office chair also needs to be wide enough to sit in comfortably. Researchers at Cornell University Ergonomics recommend a width of at least 20″ to 22″.
The Correct Wheels
It’s important to be able to move your chair around when you want to use it or when you’re sitting in it. This is why most office chairs are mounted on wheels.
The wheels on your office chair make a big difference in how easy it is to use your office chair, and they prevent strains on your back because you can roll closer to things you need without stretching for them.
You’ll need to choose the chair’s wheels based on what type of floor you have in your home office:
– An office chair with softer rubber wheels works best on solid surfaces, such as tiles and wooden floors. These wheels won’t mark or damage the floor, but you can get a plastic floor protector for your desk space if you want to protect your floor.
– If your office floor is carpeted or has a rug, choose an office chair with hard wheels that are strong enough to roll around on a soft surface.
Does it Have Swivel Function?
When picking a home office chair, go for one that swivels.
An office chair that swivels is mounted on a steel leg that can swing around 360 degrees. While sitting in a swivel chair, you can turn yourself to the left or right by pushing on the ground with your feet.
This swivel function is important in an office chair to prevent injuries to your neck and spine from twisting your body: Instead of sitting in a chair and rotating your neck or back to look at something, talk to someone, or reach for something, which can injure you, simply swivel your chair around to face the person or object.
What are the Best Home Office Chairs?
With so many ergonomic options on the market, you might not know where to start looking for the best home office chair for you and your needs.
Here are our top three home office chairs from Amazon, based on three different requirements you might have:
Best Home Office Chair Overall: Steelcase Gesture Chair
It’s the best home office chair if you spend many hours sitting at your desk, if you get body aches and pains after sitting, or if you move around in your chair a lot.
The high back is designed to support you from your upper to your lower back. Also, there are many adjustable features on this chair so you can change it for maximum personal comfort, including the back tension, armrests, lumbar support, and seat depth.
Best Lumbar Support: SIDIZ T50 Home Office Desk Chair
Need to support your posture and stop back pain? Then the SIDIZ T50 is the best desk chair for your home office.
This ergonomic chair has an s-shaped backrest that distributes the pressure on your lower spine evenly. The chair can be tilted to five different angles, and the armrests and seat slope are all adjustable.
One special feature I have to mention is that this chair comes with a headrest that keeps your head aligned with your spine, which helps you to hold a good posture and prevent back pain.
Best Budget Pick: HON Ignition 2.0 Mid-Back Adjustable
If you’re looking for a good home office chair that’s also affordable, then the HON Ignition 2.0 is an excellent option.
This chair gives you everything you need in a good ergonomic chair: adjustable height, a reclining back rest, adjustable armrests, a deep seat depth, durable wheels, adjustable lumbar support, and a 360-degree swivel function.
With its mesh back and mesh cushion, your body will be well supported and comfortable – no matter how long you end up sitting at your desk or how hot the room gets.
The best home office desk chair is an ergonomic chair that supports your entire body and posture.
If you’re looking for a good-quality office desk chair and need a checklist, pick a chair with the following features: adjustable height, a reclining back rest, adjustable armrests, a deep seat depth, the right wheels for your office floor, adjustable lumbar support, and a 360-degree swivel function.
If you get a chair with all these things, you will enjoy many hours over many years being comfortable and productive in your home office.