Sitting is one posture that we almost always do more than a standing posture. We sit for different purposes and in different places. For example, we sit when we watch shows and movies, dine, work, play video games among others. Couch potatoes at home do excessive sitting most of the time which at the end of the day find some discomfort due to long hours of sitting.
At work, many employees find themselves sitting most of the time to finish their workload as early as possible or to be done on time. Sometimes, employees are at work for a longer period of time especially when working overtime as necessary. Longer hours of seating are inevitable at the workplace and even at home where most work from home employees do their tasks and activities for the day.
However, it is found through research and studies that excessive sitting triggers diseases such as musculoskeletal disorders commonly involving the spine, joints, and neck, and lower back.
This is usually the complaints of many employees, especially neck pains and lower back due to long hours of sitting. This condition is not only an employee’s concern but also employer’s because it costs them much when employees are sick and cannot go to work for several days.
With confinement as the only option, it costs employers much money and loses revenues due to sickness and employee absenteeism. As such, employers, especially these days, see to it that the workers are given health care benefits to reduce organizational challenges regarding employee sickness and attendance.
Neck pain, for example, is the source of the most complaints coming from American workers that could lead to serious problems when it is not given more attention and treatment. Other musculoskeletal disorders such as muscle strains and injuries are not given more attention by employers as the cases of such are increasing in the past few years.
With these cases being common in the workplace, many furniture manufacturers are considering the ergonomics of home office furniture to suit the needs of the workers as they perform their tasks and responsibilities at home and inside the office.
Actually, the science of ergonomics is not a new field. In fact, the field of ergonomics has been established way back in the 1940s as a scientific discipline. Ergonomics is defined by Mr. Webster as “ an applied science concerned with designing and arranging things people use so that the people and things interact most efficiently and safely.”
As the definition implies, ergonomics is making a design that will promote the safety and efficiency of the user. As such, many homes and office furniture are ergonomically designed in order to prevent risks and sickness among the furniture users such as the employees and work from home workers. Tables or desks and office chairs are continuously being created and designed ergonomically to meet the demands and to tailor-fit to the lifestyle of the furniture user.
Today, many manufacturing companies involved in producing ergonomic furniture are too many to mention and they promise comfort and safety for workers, reducing others' risk and illnesses that may possibly arise from too much sitting or other movements that could trigger risks.
One example of a piece of furniture that is in demand in the market is an ergonomic chair. An article published online (https://ergonofis.com/blogs) defines an ergonomic chair as “is one that aims to find a solution to body pains and strains created by using a standard chair for prolonged periods. It is a chair designed to best support the body when sitting at a desk.”
In other words, an ergonomic chair is one that resolves the common pains and strains brought about by excessive sitting on an ordinary chair.
"It is a chair designed to best support the body when sitting at a desk. It considers posture, back support, distribution of weight, comfort, and movement. An ergonomic office chair will have multiple adjustable parts, so it uniquely fits every user." (retrieved from similar source)
With these in mind, there are also things that we have to consider when buying an ergonomic chair. We have to consider the following:
- Adjustable - The chair should adapt to the needs of the user in terms of efficiency, productivity, freer movements, and individual differences.
- Backrest- typically "between 12 and 19 inches wide" that naturally support the spine curve, promoting "dynamic sitting in contrast to static posture to increase the flow of the blood. As such, the ergonomic chair should let its user to recline for relief of some weight from the lower back.
- Lumbar support - provides lumbar spine support and stability of the upper body, neck, and head. "It allows for truncal movement, protects the spinal cord, and controls leg movements. Its concave curve helps to distribute the weight, which reduces the concentration of stress. Sitting in a chair without lumbar support tends to flatten that curve, which leads to lower back pain."
- Seat height adjustable - a good office chair is adjustable from 15 to 22 inches off the floor that fits people who are 5' to 6'4" tall. With proper height, the user's feet should be flat on the floor with knees at a 50-degree angle. This reduces stress on the knees and lumbar region.
- Seat width - standard seat width is between 17 and 20 inches wide. a user should be sitting comfortably with at least one (1) inch on their side of the hips but not that wide that arms need to be stretched to touch the armrests.
- Seat depth - “ needs to be deep enough for the user to sit with their back against the backrest but leaves a space for 2 to 4 fingers between the end of the chair and the user’s knees. At least ¾ of the thighs need to be supported by the seat. Look for chairs that have a seat slider, which lets the user slide the seat in and out while sitting in the chair. “
With these things to be aware of when choosing a chair for your home office, a highly recommendable product that features them is one from Flexispot. The product is the Ergonomic Office Chair 9051 which is seat height adjustable, with a rocking function. It has a thickly padded headrest that spells comfort for your neck and a double padded seat cushion for a more cozy sitting experience. It also features ideal seat height, depth, and width for the prospective user. Grab yours now!