Ergonomic Reclining Office Chairs – Are They Worth It?
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Ergonomic reclining office chairs can be used both at home and at work. But with alternatives such as fixed chairs, gaming chairs or semi-adjustable chairs, is ergonomic reclining office chair really worth it? To begin with, many ergonomic reclining office chairs have a reclining backrest, as their name suggests. They can also come with head support and with other adjustability characteristics such as various height setting and lumbar support, ergonomic chairs seem to have it all. With our new addition to the team with the MyoChair, Autonomous understand how and why ergonomics is changing the way we sit at the desk.
One of the immediate benefits which come with an ergonomic reclining office chair is pain reduction. Pain is directly inflicted on the back and neck when a poor position is maintained for long periods of time. As time passes, this problem can get worse and worse. Eventually, most people realize their posture was wrong when they have acute pain.
Autonomous’ OsmoChair comes with an adjustable backrest. Moving forwards up to angles of up to 16 degrees, the chair is recommended to frequently change the position of the back. This considerably reduces back pain as increased movement activates muscles and prevents stiff joints and bad circulation.
But pain can also radiate to other areas around the back, such as the hips. It is why an ergonomic chair is considerably different to a chair with a fixed backrest or to a chair with no backrest at all as it takes some of the weight away from the spine making it easier for people to sit for hours.
One of the direct benefits of reduced back pain comes with improved productivity. Various studies have already shown how productivity is directly impacted by the health of the workers. But there is no health to base the work on with bad posture.
Improved productivity can also be encountered with frequent short breaks. It has been shown that staying active is recommended regardless of the type of office chair. But productivity is not only influenced by the design of the chair as it is also marked by its materials. While it can be difficult to work for hours with materials which get the body temperature up, mesh materials are known for their breathability. They do a better job at a productivity which ensures are deadlines are met.
But it is not correct to attribute all productivity variables solely on the office chair, be it reclining and ergonomic. The desk, the monitor and the lighting also have a role in how a person feels in relation to the work environment. So if a football player needs the right protective equipment, the right shoes, and athletic clothing, the same applies to office workers who need proper desks, the right monitor height and the best chairs.
Comfort made for each body shape
An ergonomic chair immediately differentiates itself with the comfort it offers. Beyond the classic lines of chairs which are not made to make people comfortable, ergonomic chairs are truly recommended for those seeking the ultimate comfort which is made to follow the contour of the body. But since a single design cannot fit all body shapes and sizes, the adjustability of such chairs becomes a top priority.
It is why Autonomous also designed an adjustable backrest both for the recline angle and for the height of the backrest. This works best for those seeking to have a more custom chair, those who are not satisfied with the one size fits all approach and those who want custom comfort. Beyond being simply a solution to those of various shapes and heights, an ergonomic chair naturally supports the back and the feet, without needed some type of extra effort from the office worker.
Support for the spine
Supporting the spine might not be as easy as many people think, especially since even the right sitting position is to be changed during the day to avoid stiffness. In this case, spine support needs a bit of freedom. With adjustability levers, adjustable lumbar support, incline and tilt support, Autonomous ergonomic reclining office chairs are truly made to support the spine in multiple positions.
Most specialists recommend a perfectly vertical working position, where the head is directly above the shoulders. However, this might not be maintained for hours. It is why workers can work from an inclined position such as when taking calls or when talking to a colleague. Those taking longer calls or those wishing to relax and stretch their feet a bit can use the recline adjustability of an ergonomic chair. This allows a bit more freedom of movement without actually leaving the chair.
Furthermore, those who are simply wishing to take some time to think or those working in creative industries might also need to take frequent breaks. Sitting in a reclined position might come as the perfect opportunity to make this happen.
An issue which is not discussed enough when it comes to recline and incline with ergonomic chairs is the resistance of the backrest when making these posture changes. It should not be too difficult to make these changes. The backrest should not require too much effort from the lumbar muscles to make the adjustments. At the same time, the mechanism needs to be supportive enough not to recline by mistake.
Keeping joints in a natural position
Muscle aches are not the only issue facing office workers. Joints can be negatively impacted as well. To begin with, the leg joints such as the knees can suffer when there is not enough blood flow in the legs, which might be the case when the legs do not actually reach the ground. An ergonomic chair addresses this issue and with constantly improving seat pans and height adjustability, this should not be a problem anymore.
While the spine can suffer from an incorrect position at the desk, other joints can suffer as well. This includes the shoulders and the wrists, directly impacted by the armrests. If these armrests are not adjustable, it’s highly likely they can cause some types of pain in these joints.
If the armrests are too high, which is the case for many shorter people, the pain can move towards the wrists. If the armrests are too low, the pain can move towards the forearms as they constantly lead against the edge of the desk. All people are different and they need various heights for their armrests.
But the materials are important as well. Hard plastics might be uncomfortable for joints such as the elbows. Softer materials are recommended in these areas which are in contact with the elbows. When there is plenty of cushioning in the armrests, workers can maintain their focus and productivity for longer periods of time.
The adjustable backrest is one of the main reasons to purchase an ergonomic reclining office chair. It is actually the first reason to fuel a purchase. As there are so many types of chairs on the market, those making the most out of the design are people who are actually using the recline position.
It is why these chairs are primarily recommended for people who work full time. Part-time office workers might get away with a simpler chair which is made to be used in fixed position. In the case of part-time workers, the pressure on the spine is not felt as severely as with an 8-hour work day. For those seeking ultimate freedom even while being seated, an adjustable backrest offers all the needed support.
People in customer service might not be allowed to use a reclining chair. Due to professional reasons, these workers might need to use fixed backrest chairs when facing customers or clients. But other types of workers such as those in admin or creative industries might actually benefit from this backrest adjustability.
Adjustable lumbar support
The adjustable lumbar support used to be reserved for premium chairs only. In time, this has changed and this adjustability evolved from an extra accessory used from time to time to support the spine to an ergonomic design which has this built-in functionality. For most workers, it means access to full lumbar support is possible and even affordable.
Adjustability for the lumbar support can come in height or depth. Short and tall people need lumbar support at different heights. But then again, this lumbar support might also need depth adjustment to fit various body types. The good news is that this adjustability deals with the most pressing issue of proper posture, which always starts with the way the base of the spine sits on a chair.
Improved width and depth
Ergonomic reclining chairs are now made with a better perception of width and depth, especially when it comes to the seat pan. Some chairs even offer adjustable seat pans. However, the design of the seat pan has evolved as well. Manufacturers understood that a seat pan which is comfortable in the front and keeps the feet relaxed is not obtrusive to the blood circulation in the legs. While this may not be important for some people, those who sit for hours know its importance. Furthermore, it’s also recommended to get a complete break from sitting from time to time, even with the best seat pan.
The swivel function of an office chair is perfect when trying to reach a colleague or when looking for the phone. The quality of the swivel design is important and it impacts the perception of the worker on the chair itself. For many people, it also means dealing with various tasks around the office is simpler as well. Reaching documents or various files should be easier with these designs, which do not require workers to stand up, as would the chairs with no swivel functionality.
All these mechanisms need to be placed on a stable base. Balanced designs need to remain stable even if the chairs are set to a position where the backrest is at its highest point. Since the chairs come with recline functionality, they really need to balance the changing center of gravity and keep workers in the same position with no risk of accidents. With a better and a safer base, workers can fully trust their chairs even when reclined to a maximum point.
Working made easy
But beyond all of these benefits, an ergonomic reclining office chair comes with an improved workflow. Making the work day easier should come naturally for the best chairs. It involves simplifying small tasks such as those aided by the swivel function. It also means allowing the back to relax in a reclined position. It also means allowing workers to set their own height for the lumbar support which is so beneficial with long days at work. An ergonomic reclining office chair should improve the entire work perspective for most people.
Choosing the best ergonomic reclining office chair is not too complicated. If these functionalities are met, the sole areas to address come with the materials of the chair. If they match the requirements of the worker, such as durability and comfort, the chair design becomes well rounded and recommended for long-term use. Beyond the classic materials which can be used in chair manufacturing, such as synthetic leather, other textile and mesh materials can be considered for modern office environments.
Autonomous has a selection of ergonomic reclining office chairs. They are made to suit various needs and they can even come with nice-to-have extras such as headrests or leg rests. Best suited for those working at a desk, these chairs are made to ensure right back support in vertical and angled positions. If you want to choose one of the chairs are the daily solutions for your workspace, you can take full advantage of the upcoming special Black Friday deals.
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