Your Guide to Buying an Ergonomic Office Chair

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An ergonomic office chair promotes good posture and is designed to reduce the amount of strain on a number of the body’s pressure points. This kind of chair is especially beneficial to those with certain health conditions, such as bad backs and hips. Ergonomic chairs are ideal for those working in an office setting, providing both comfort and relief of bodily stress. This stress can stem from long sitting durations in positions that may not be best for the body. An ergonomic office chair’s curved design offers strong lumbar support for the lower back. The chair’s curve supports the natural curve of the spine, thus helping to prevent slouching and promoting a straightening of the spine instead. When choosing an ergonomic office chair, it is best to choose one that has both a height and a depth lumbar adjustment, allowing users to adjust the fit for the inward curve of their lower backs.

Ergonomic office chairs also have a number of other features that are designed to help their users perform their tasks with minimal strain. Although they are more expensive than traditional office chairs are, ergonomic office chairs’ benefits far outweigh this price differential. Some of these benefits can include increased production and less down time for the user. In order to give buyers direction on which ergonomic office chair will best fit their needs, this guide will discuss the various types of ergonomic office chairs, it will present some popular features of ergonomic office chairs, and it will give instruction about how and where to buy ergonomic office chairs at brick and mortar office supply retailers, as well as at online merchants like eBay.

Types of Ergonomic Office Chairs

In addition to the standard ergonomic office chair, this style of chair also comes in additional designs, providing more unique sitting options. Similarly to the basic ergonomic chair, the ergonomic knee chair and ergonomic ball chair help to reduce the amount of strain on a user’s back during long sitting durations while in the office. A large variety of options for these chairs is available because no one chair is perfect for all users.

Ergonomic Knee Chair

An ergonomic knee chair is designed for sitting in a fashion that is more similar to kneeling than it is to sitting on a flat surface. This type of chair generally includes a few padded elements that are responsible for supporting the knees and the user’s rear end. The weight of a user should be distributed between these two pads so that the weight is not entirely placed on the knees. A back pad may also be included as part of the design to permit the user to lean back. These elements can typically be adjusted in height and in angle in order to fit the user. This is important because users often have varying preferences for the steepness of kneeling, so the chair may also be uncomfortable if it is not set at the right height. To sit in an ergonomic knee chair, users are typically required to slip into the chair around a bar that attaches the knee pad to the rest of the chair. Ergonomic knee chairs are aimed at reducing the strains that are related to sitting for long periods. The chair is intended for an office setting and is available in a wide array of colors, materials, and designs. Chairs that feature a wood and leather finish are often found on the more expensive end of the price spectrum.

Ergonomic Ball Chair

An ergonomic ball chair is designed for office use and combines the standard features of a desk chair, such as one with rolling wheels, with the benefits of using an inflatable ball for seating. The ball encourages active seating, meaning that the body cannot slump in the chair. Instead, in order to maintain balance, users must concentrate on keeping the spine aligned and utilizing core muscles. This consciousness helps to sustain proper posture and may be of significant benefit to those who must sit for long periods or those who experience back trouble that makes sitting uncomfortable. These chairs often contain two parts: the inflatable ball and a frame with wheels into which the ball fits. Having the ball section raised off the floor can provide greater stability. Most ergonomic ball chairs also feature a back and have supportive armrests as well as a hand pump to control ball inflation. This type of ball is suitable for all body weights and is height adjustable to contour to various desk elevations. The ball comes in two different types: an egg shaped ball (which is also known as the Swiss egg chair) and a fully round ball. Both ball types may require a little adjustment, especially if a user is not used to the balancing aspect of an exercise ball.

Features of Ergonomic Chairs

There are many features of ergonomic chairs that should be considered when a user is searching for the perfect fit. While an ergonomic chair should ultimately support the lower back and should help to promote optimal posture, additional features (as illustrated in the chart below) can provide both comfort and efficiency in a work environment.

Ergonomic Chair Features

Description

Swivel

The swivel in an ergonomic chair helps users to reach points on their desks and cubicle areas without having to stretch or strain excessively.

Recline or Tilt

An ergonomic office chair should recline and tilt according to a user’s needs and desires. By reclining to the proper angle, much of the body’s weight can be focused on the back of the chair, which is where it should be focused. Being able to change the tilt is an additional benefit, allowing the body to move, as opposed to being in the same position for too many hours at a stretch.

Seat

Breathable fabric seat material is generally a better choice over hard or plastic selections. Leather or vinyl is another option, but these materials typically carry a higher price tag than fabric does. Chairs should also have sufficient padding in order to maintain comfort. The chair’s seat may also be able to recline, allowing users to better relax.

Armrests

Armrests should adjust and be set at a level that is comfortable for the user, keeping the user’s arms rested and their shoulders relaxed. Users should avoid resting their forearms on the armrest while typing, as it promotes bad typing posture and can lead to other injuries and conditions such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

Height

The height of the chair should be adjustable. Many users prefer the ease of pneumatic adjustable levers. For in-office use, the chair should permit for adjusting to at least 16 to 21 inches from the ground. This allows users to keep their feet firmly planted on the floor, their thighs horizontal, and their arms level with the surface of the desk.

Depth

An ergonomic chair's width and depth are important. Most users purchase a seat that is between 17 and 20 inches across. The chair should be deep enough to allow those seated to have their back against the backrest and still have a few inches of space from the back of their knees to the seat of the chair.

Width

The backrest of an ergonomic chair should typically range between 12 and 19 inches in width. If purchasing a backrest separately from the seat, buyers should look for one that can be adjusted in terms of height as well as angle. When the backrest of a chair is part of a one-piece arrangement, it is imperative to choose one with a backrest that can adjust forward as well as backward.

The features of ergonomic office chairs help people to use the furniture as a means of remaining healthy while maximizing their performance. Adjustable features ensure that different sized users can adjust the chair to allow them to sit with their feet flat on the floor and with their knees at a 90-degree angle.

Buying Ergonomic Office Chairs on eBay

Ergonomic office chairs can be purchased in a number of brick and mortar office supply stores and home furnishing stores, but the widest selections at the best prices can often be found at online retailers like eBay. Starting your search for an ergonomic office chair on eBay is easy. Navigate your way to eBay’s homepage, and then visit the Business & Industrial section, which is found under the All Categories link. From here, you can choose the Office Furniture portal from the Office category, and then further narrow your options by selecting Chairs. You can take advantage of eBay’s keyword search feature by entering a term like "ergonomic ball chair," and then limit your results through filters such as Format, Condition, and Price.

Researching eBay Items

After you have located a potential purchase, you should spend some time researching both the product listing and the item’s seller. Product listings should provide all pertinent details about an item, like whether the ergonomic office chair is new or used, and they should clearly substantiate any signs of wear. Through the product listing, you can also get an overview of a seller’s past performance that is based on customer satisfaction by utilizing eBay’s feedback rating system.

Protected Purchasing on eBay

eBay has taken great strides to ensure that their users experience a safe and simple purchasing process. You can learn about the security safeguards that eBay has established by visiting the eBay Security Center. After reading the tips that the Security Center has to offer, you can begin to employ many of the security practices that have been recommended by eBay to help you establish a well-protected account.

Conclusion

In a working environment in which a user will be in a desk chair for long periods, choosing the right ergonomic office chair can be very important to that person's overall health. Users must find the right type of chair that adapts well to their body and provides proper lumbar support, as no one chair is perfect for all users. Additionally, the buyer will need to choose the proper fitting features in the chair in order to achieve the very best comfort level possible. Many people will find themselves amazed at how the utilization of an ergonomic office chair can lessen the strain on their back and how it can increase their productivity in the workplace. Ergonomic office chairs come in a wide array of colors and styles, each with its own unique features to help boost its users’ optimal posture. With so many ergonomic office chair listings from which to choose, office supply stores and online retailers like eBay can help any working professional protect themselves from the risk of the health issues that are related to sitting in a desk chair for prolonged periods.

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