Are You Choosing The Right Office Chairs For Your Employees?

Shopping for office chairs may not seem like the most exciting way to spend your work day, but knowing your staff is comfortable and productive should bring you peace of mind. Whether you're looking to replace a few chairs or you're completely outfitting your office, you may need someone to point you in the right direction. Here are four easy tips for choosing the right office chairs for your employees.

Tip #1: Look for Lumbar Support

You're probably on a budget just like every other business owner, but it's important to realize that your employees make up the backbone of your business. So, providing them with chairs that have good lumbar support is not an overindulgence; it's a necessity.

According to research, approximately 65 million Americans struggle with back pain, and it's the second most common reason people visit their doctor. Now, most people can maintain the natural curvature of the spine for short lengths of time when sitting. But the longer you sit, the harder it is to keep that natural "S" shape.

After a while, the lower back begins to slouch, bringing on the pain. Proper lumbar support in a chair should keep the ears, shoulders, and hips in alignment. Be sure the chairs you invest in have this feature.

Tip #2: Avoid Chairs with Too Much Cushion

Initially, you may think the more cushion the better, right? While you don't want your staff to sit on a stack of bricks all day long, you should also steer clear of chairs that are too cushiony, and here's why.

Chairs that are too soft allow the body to sink in and relax, so they often lead to slouching. Firmer chairs, on the other hand, provide more support and prevent back and shoulder pain. The reason for this is when you sit in a soft chair, small muscle groups tend to tense up in order to provide the support that your back and shoulders need.

When shopping for office chairs, compare the seats and the thickness of the cushion, opting for something in the middle.

Tip #3: Go for Adjustable Chairs

Investing in chairs that can accommodate different body types is crucial, but what parts need to be adjusted?

Some office chairs have adjustable lumbar support, which can be highly beneficial. But there are other things to consider. Being able to change the arm height and chair height is pretty much a must-have for an ergonomic work area.

Chairs should adjust to allow the legs to be at a 90-degree angle when sitting and keep feet flat on the floor. The elbows should also rest on the arm of the chair at a comfortable 90 degrees so the arms and hands don't get fatigued when typing. And lastly, the height of the chair should be adjusted until the user is able to view the computer screen without lowering or raising their eyes or head. Foot stools can be used if necessary.

Tip #4: Choose the Right Fabric

Office chairs come with a variety of fabrics to choose from, and they tend to vary in the comfort and support they provide.

Some people prefer vinyl chairs since they're easy to clean. But they're also prone to tearing, and they don't breathe very well and can lead to sweating.

Leather is a popular choice but when buying in bulk, it can drive up your costs. Leather also doesn't allow the skin to breathe when sitting for long periods of time.

Mesh is likely the best option for allowing skin to breathe. But because of the way it's made and the materials used, it doesn't allow the body weight to distribute as well as other fabrics. So, this may not be the ideal choice.

Chairs with woven fabrics are another option, and those that offer more ergonomic features tend to be made with recycled fabrics that don't give off toxic fumes, making them the ideal choice for offices.