Are you sitting comfortably in your chair?
Updated: Mar 27
You might have a great office chair...but how do you know the best way to actually sit?
Whenever we get into our car after someone has driven it we automatically set ourselves the task of adjusting the seat depth, lumbar support, mirrors and even possibly the steering rake in order to customise the experience for our own comfort.
In fact, even when no one else drives our car we still make small teaks on different days to ensure that we are comfortable before setting about our journey. Why then do so many of us sit in an office chair and simply accept it without adjustment?
Many people simply accept an office chair regardless of its comfort levels and therefore end up with an office chair that simply does not fit them. Even of those who do have a correctly fitting chair, a staggering number spend 6 hours a day or more sat in a chair that they rarely or never adjust.
Any reasonable office chair will include adjustment features of some description; of course, the better quality the chair, more features it is likely to have. These adjustable features are incorporated to make you more comfortable in your work by making changes, some subtle, to your posture. These adjustable features are made to be adjusted and changed by you.
If an object can be physically interacted with then it is by virtue ergonomic... However just because something can be adjusted, it doesn’t mean it is user friendly; there is a difference between ‘ergonomics’ and ‘good ergonomics’.
We welcome the opportunity to discuss ergonomic office furniture and give advice to anyone that feels that they would benefit from a chat. However, we also provide these basic tips on sitting well:
Back support: The risk of back pain can be reduced by making sure that your lower back is sufficiently supported through the right office chair adjustment. Endeavour to purchase an ergonomic office chair that enables adjustment to back height, back position and tilt. Your back will also be better supported if your knees are slightly lower than your hips.
Adjust your chair: You should able to use your keyboard ensuring that your wrists and forearms are straight and level with the floor; make sure that you adjust your office chair height to achieve this as it can help to prevent the symptoms associated with repetitive strain injuries.
Rest your feet on the floor: Keep your feet flat on the floor, using a footrest if necessary to keep your feet at the right level. Crossing your legs can have an negative impact on posture and should be avoided.
Take regular breaks from sitting in the same position: It is important to make sure you change your posture as often as is feasible in your job role.
Frequent short breaks from sitting are more advantageous to your back than one long one as gives different part of your body time to rest whilst others ‘do their job’.
There are ergonomic office chairs that promote support as you move in your work; another option is consideration of sit stand workstations using height adjustable desks.
In conclusion, if you have an office task chair with the potential to make adjustments to it, then use them and see if you are able to provide yourself with a better level of comfort than you already have.
If you feel that you would benefit from a discussion about ergonomic office chairs then we are always happy to chat on the telephone or you could drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org