Recent research indicates that a good percentage of the injuries reported by employees at their workplaces are as a direct or indirect result of bad, old or poorly designed office furniture. This is not a statistic that any organization wants to be considered a contributor to.
I have observed that most organizations, large and small, are now deliberately investing in ergonomic office chair options. While the cry of those who aren’t yet on board with this trend is cost, it is better to be safe than sorry. The law suits that come with office injuries can be financially debilitating in the long so my advice always is; do not compromise on quality and safety.
So why would you consider ergonomic furniture? Well an ergonomic office chair, for instance, is designed to help you stay comfortable, productive and upright, preventing injuries to your spine, back or neck. The hips too can suffer damage if your seat has ergonomic challenges. Below are some common features that you will find in ergonomic office chairs.
With the evolution of ergonomic furniture, mesh office chairs have become quite popular. They are generally preferred for offices nowadays. Among other things, mesh office chairs are comfortable, breathable and stylish.
If you are like most people who spend a lot of time seated, you have probably seen (and perhaps tested) various types of mesh chairs. If you have, you may probably have found yourself developing a preference for one over the other. The level of comfort you get from varying mesh office chairs depends on each design and personal preferences.
The type of mesh used to make the office chair will determine how much support and comfort it gives. Additionally, you will find out that some designs are more comfortable than others even if the type of mesh used is the same.
Mesh, when used as an ergonomic material, spreads the weight of the seat occupant evenly. Increased surface area reduces pressure. This means that the parts of the body in contact with the seat experiences less pressure. The same cannot be said for materials such as wood or plastic which focus pressure around the area of contact.
Ergonomics of office furniture goes beyond mesh seats designed to contour around the body. Desk chair cushions are also quite popular. Today’s office work has people sitting down for long periods. It is especially worse in offices where workers are overwhelmed, and have to remain at their work stations long after the recommended 8 hour work day.
Sitting upright is comfortable, until it is not. The body cannot stay in one rigid position for a long time without resulting into discomfort or pain. Sometimes, without us picking up on it (because we are intently concentrating on the task at hand), we begin to slide down the seat, slouch or lean over unhealthily.
Office chair cushions are designed to keep your body in healthy positions and offer adequate support to sensitive areas as you work. They are the reminder that you need to change posture if you unconsciously start slouching.
• Gel based chair cushions are designed to support a specific area and offer relief in case of any discomfort or pain
• Memory foam cushions help you sit appropriately for longer periods. The shape you leave on the cushion stays on there even after you get up
• Posture protecting cushions are designed to correct posture problems and keep you seated in the right positions
If you considering real leather office chairs, you are already on the right track. It is virtually impossible to go wrong with real leather. Think of all those magnificent offices you see on television. Is it not always exquisite leather seats with magnificently high backs in wood paneled offices? Yes, leather equals class.
Now that we have the obvious reason out of the way, let us look at the more practical reasons why you need to buy real leather office chairs. Real leather is comfortable, easy to clean and durable. As long as you do not cut scratch or tear it, leather actually gets better with time. All you have to do is clean it appropriately and give it the appropriate maintenance.
Leather will not clean up any spills easily and effectively. Food crumbs in the crack of the leather need no more than good vacuuming.
Leather is also very adaptable to weather. It does not get hot during the hot season. It actually warms up by retaining heat during cold seasons. High quality leather comes with a comfort guarantee.
So, what are the characteristics of the best ergonomic chair? In my professional opinion, a proper ergonomic chair should combine a little bit of everything. It should be wholesome in terms of what it provides you as the user. Think of an office chair that combines aesthetics and functionality seamlessly while catering to your lumbar support needs.
Leather is one of the materials that are used to make high quality ergonomic office chairs. It is durable, comfortable, executive and easy to maintain. Leather office chairs incorporate other materials. For instance, the frame can be made of steel and the wheels can be made of heavy duty plastic or rubber.
As amazing as leather ergonomic seats are, they are not exactly cheap. If you have a tight budget for office furniture, you may opt for other more affordable choices. You can go for a mesh recliner; it will be as comfortable and offer adequate back support.
Mesh offers less pizazz but comes with numerous modern advancements. The chair cushions, for example, and the memory foam elements would be a lot easier to incorporate in a mesh chair than they would be in a leather office seat.
At the end of the day, a lot of factors have to go into your ergonomic purchase decision. Be sure to make a choice that caters to all your needs some. Be bold enough to try out different styles, materials and sizes of seats until you get the seat that works for you.
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