Ergo means “labour” or “work” and nomos means “natural laws”. The concept of ergonomics emerged way back in the early 1900s as a way to enhance the productivity of workers. Today, in the 21st century, we spend countless hours straining various parts of our bodies sitting in uncomfortable office chairs at work. While spending so much of our time and energy at work is unavoidable, straining our bodies to do so need not be! There are now several customizable ergonomic chairs in India designed to alleviate strain and enhance productivity. Read on more to find how the right ergonomic chair for you can completely change your work experience.
What is an ergonomic office chair and how is it different from my regular office chair?
An ergonomic chair is designed to protect your spine, muscles, and posture by optimizing for flexibility, comfort, blood flow, and weight distribution. Some health professionals have gone so far as to compare the health impacts of spending long hours sitting in office chairs to smoking cigarettes. As they restrict movement and lack support, standard office chairs may be harming you in multiple ways:
- Posture: Sitting in a non-ergonomic office chair can cause severe postural issues and even lead to chronic health issues. In fact, when your spine is not aligned, there is increased pressure on the rest of your muscles to hold your body upright, causing a cascade of health problems.
- Blood circulation: Have you ever worked continuously for a few hours without moving and felt the familiar “pins and needles” sensation? This is actually your body signaling that there is a deficiency of blood in the area.
- Fatigue: Sitting uncomfortably for extended hours can cause faster and more intense fatigue, which can directly impact your work efficiency.
- Concentration: Lack of proper blood circulation causes less blood flow to your brain, leaving you feeling slow and sluggish.
- Muscle health: Poor support for your back can cause spinal disc compression and lead to premature degeneration and severe aches and pains.
- Digestion: It is a lesser-known fact that bad lumbar support and poor posture can actually slow down digestion.
- Mobility: The lack of flexibility in regular chairs in terms of mobility is a stark contrast to the mobility and comfort offered by ergonomic office chairs.
What does an ergonomic chair offer that can fix these issues?
- Adjustable seat height, width, and depth: A pneumatic adjustment lever allows you to customize the ergonomic chair to your stature and comfort.
- Lumbar support: Ergonomic chairs are designed to provide support to the curve of the back, especially the lower back, to reduce strain.
- Backrest: An adjustable backrest will allow the spine to curve naturally and reduce pressure on the rest of the body, and the lumbar region.
- Better material: Ergonomic office chairs are generally padded or made of specific materials to enhance breathability and comfort. They are made of cloth or leather, but companies are now coming up with newer materials to further increase their benefits.
- Adjustable armrests: As ergonomic chairs have adjustable armrests, users can type or work at a desk for extended periods without feeling cramped or uncomfortable.
- Swivels: Swivels or the wheels at the bottom of the chair allow the user to have mobility and freedom of movement.
What are the different types of ergonomic office chairs?
As many working individuals have shifted to a remote/home office following the COVID-19 pandemic, people have been increasingly on the lookout for the perfect work-from-home chair. Here, we have shortlisted the best options from among the numerous ergonomic chairs out there.
- Executive office chairs: As the name suggests, most commonly used by those who can afford to pay a little extra for premium quality and extra comfort, executive chairs are characterized by high quality, height, and supreme comfort and support.
- Drafting chairs: Designed to enhance ease of transitioning from sitting to standing positions and vice versa, drafting chairs are ideal for back, limb, and overall body support.
- Kneeling ergonomic chairs: These ergonomic chairs are meant to alleviate chronic back pain by distributing weight between the knees and the pelvis through their slanting design.
- Saddle chairs: Aimed at reducing risk of a spinal injury from long hours of sitting, they promote better posture in the neck, back, and upper body.
- Conference chairs: The more economical option, conference chairs are designed for use in conference rooms, offer lesser lumbar support than others, but are still a better option than your regular chair.
- Petite/small chairs and big/tall chairs: These are customized for people with varying stature in terms of weight, material usage, and height.
- 24-hour chairs: With padded support, these ergonomic chairs are meant for extended use over long hours.
Regardless of which one you choose, ergonomic chairs are significantly better for your physiological and mental health compared to traditional office chairs. While purchasing an ergonomic chair, make sure to go through all the factors (as mentioned above) and find the right fit in terms of comfort, flexibility, durability, cost, and aesthetic to suit your exact needs.
1. Do I really need an ergonomic chair?
Ans. In comparison to your standard chair, an ergonomic chair can relieve several physical and mental issues such as muscle disorders, reduced concentration, increased fatigue, physical discomfort, and spinal issues.
2. Are ergonomic chairs expensive?
Ans. While ergonomic chairs are more expensive than regular chairs, in the long term, it is an investment that will likely reduce your expenditure on medical bills and increase your efficiency at work, eventually causing you to improve your quality of work, and hence, your income.
3. How much would a good ergonomic chair cost me?
Ans. A good ergonomic chair from Green Soul will cost you anywhere between INR 3500 to INR 22500.
4. What are the factors to consider when buying an ergonomic chair?
Ans. There are several factors to consider when purchasing an ergonomic chair such as comfort, flexibility, durability, customization, cost, and design.
5. Are good ergonomic chairs available in India?
Ans. Yes, you can purchase good ergonomic chairs in India. There are several designs to choose from, which can serve different purposes based on your needs. For instance, https://www.greensoul.online/ offers a wide range of unique world-class seating products. They provide high durability, comfort, and support, in addition to being cost-effective and stylish.
6. Do ergonomic chairs last a long time?
Ans. Depending on the quality of your ergonomic chair, it can last you anywhere between one and over ten years. An ergonomic office chair of good quality is meant to last between seven and ten years.