Ergonomic Office Chairs: Help Prevent Back Pain

The human body has evolved over many years, thousands in fact, and in reality we have only started sitting for long periods of time in the last 30 years or so, changing our bodies natural adaptation from a dynamic hunter gatherer into a mostly sedentary 'information' gatherer. This latest adaptation has taken its toll, so finding the best chairs that can help with back pain is essential to keeping a happy and healthy workforce.

When we get asked about the subject of back pain in the work place we will often start by looking at the benefits of an ergonomic chair over a standard chair.

Browse our selection of Ergonomic Chairs here

Ergonomic Chair – Prevention or a cure

Generally the only people that look to buy our ergonomic office chairs are people who already have an existing back complaint and want to find a chair that does not aggravate or can help alleviate their discomfort. What we like to recommend to our clients and to companies looking to set up an office or replacing their existing chairs, is to consider the benefits that the ergonomic chair can offer as a preventative measure, pointing out long term health factors and well being. 

We also discuss the productivity of staff that spend a lot of time sat at a desk, and how this can improve by using an ergonomic chair. 

We understand it is a bit more to invest up front, but over a sustained period ergonomic chairs help cut down on sick days for stress as well as back complaints, saving you money in the long run.

We did some research on back pain and how ergonomic chairs help.

We have not only used our own in house knowledge to bring you as much useful information as possible, but have also been looking and speaking to experts across the general back pain area. 6 good points that we have found for using an ergonomic chair are:

It supports your posture – Fully adjustable so your feet are flat on the floor, with your knees at 90 degrees to the floor and parallel with your hips, they will also have an adjustable lower back support. 

It is simply more comfortable – Because these chairs are more comfortable and you can adjust all elements it enables you to create your perfect seating position rather than a standard office chair that dictates how you sit. 

It reduces the risk of neck problems – Sitting with limited support you can develop stiffness in your neck and shoulders, ergonomic chairs will have a high support and a head rest supporting the natural curve of your spine, this is especially good for people that spend a lot of time answering the telephone. 

It reduces the risk of back pain – This is generally achieved via the use of back rests and the previously mentioned available adjustments, along with most ergonomic chairs generally have a reclining function. 

It reduces pressure on your hips – Chairs specifically for back pain will have a depth of 2-4 inches from the back of your knees that will support the hip and buttocks reducing most of the pressure off your hips and lower back. 

It makes working easy – All of the features mentioned in these bullet points all enable the chair to allow you to adjust it so that whatever task you are performing will be able to be accommodated, they will generally have a swivel feature that will allow the user to move around in comfort too.


Creating a Healthy Environment to reduce Back pain

Ergonomic ChairErgonomic office chairs are just one element for you to look into when creating a healthy working environment. There is also the consideration of the correct desk, to ensure you work at the optimum level. Think about foot risers to make sure your feet are not stretching for the floor, and you are also not on tip toes. All of these factors are important, all the way through to making sure that your mouse is correctly positioned for you to work with your body in the correct posture.

In short, ergonomic back pain chairs are just one element of creating the best working environment possible, and in our opinion one of the most important ones. To optimise the value of the chair, it should ideally be done as part of a complete office furniture solution, that runs alongside correct health and safety procedures for lifting and any manual jobs that may be required.

What users have to understand is that the ergonomic chairs is not a cure all solution to back pain in the workplace, but should be used as part of an all around strategy. We referenced the to help us with this article and would like to thank them for the informative resources. We would also like to thank as we have found a fantastic resource for everyone. It is a brilliant PDF document on how you should be setting up your workstation, with all elements included from your, mouse, keyboard and telephone, your monitor and your desk layout. This is a complete set up guide, so be sure to take a look to ensure that you have the best set up possible. Click to view

Selecting the best chair for back pain

When it comes to selecting your ergonomic chair most of them come with multiple adjustments. What we always say is, when choosing a chair, if you have a pre-existing back issue, always check that the chair you select has the relevant adjustments. If you are unsure, just give us a call and ask.

We have also found some useful information on the selecting of your ergonomic chair from the University of Pittsburgh in the USA, it is a great article pointing out the preventative values of the ergonomic chair when adjusted correctly, there study produced a very compelling argument for the use of the ergonomic chair. Click here to view the resources

Ergonomic Chairs, a great place to start.

Taking all of these elements into consideration there are many factors to back pain, its origins and how to prevent it or reduce its impact in the workplace. However, the ergonomic chair is a great place to start as it allows you to meet the standards that you need by having so many adjustable sections, along with supplying the support in the best most relevant areas, head, neck, lower back and hips. So, although they do seem a rather expensive chair, in comparison to a standard office chair, in the long run and to support the long term health of your workforce, which in turn saves you money on sick days. Can you really afford not to have an office chair that will reduce the risk of back pain for your workforce?

View our range of Ergonomic Office Chairs here


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