An ergonomic computer chair may be the key to a better back whether you're a worker, a student, or a home computer user.
Most of us spend large amounts of time in front of computers these days - for some of us, 40 hours a week or more are spent staring at the screen!
The risks of this are not limited to your back - write injuries and illnesses are common for regular computer users, and eye damage can occur if your head isn't the right distance from your screen. All these issues can lead to serious pain and suffering, not to mention big medical bills in the long term. So it's important to invest in a good ergonomic computer chair from the beginning.
But how do you find a good computer chair? How do you know which one is best for you? Well, these are questions this page will help you answer. We're about to look at some of the major benefits of owning an ergonomic computer chair (and the risks of not owning one), what to look at when making a purchase and a few of the top products on the market which you might want to check out. So read on.
Computers are a central part of all our lives these days. Even with the development of smart phone and small, hand-held computers, we still spend much of our time sitting at a desk. Even if you work on a laptop, you'll need a good ergonomic chair if you're going to be sitting for many hours at a time.
A good ergonomic chair provides lower back support and is designed to put you into a safe and healthy posture. This doesn't just mean sitting up straight - it also means making sure your arms and wrists are at the right level and right angle to your keyboard. This is crucial for avoiding typing-related diseases like carpal tunnel syndrome.
The position of your head is also very important when it comes to sitting in a safe and healthy way, and a good ergonomic chair will help make sure your spine is aligned and your head rests upright as it should, rather than extended forward, which can strain your neck. This will also help you avoid eye strain, both by making sure your eyes are the right distance from the computer screen, and by releasing tension in the nerves in your neck which link up to the nerves at the back of your eyes.
Now that you understand why it's important to have an ergonomic computer chair, you need to have an idea of the criteria you should be looking for when buying one. After all, there's not much point looking at dozens of different models if you don't even know what you're looking for and what the various words mean.
Back support is the biggest thing you should be looking for. If you spend long hours at the computer, back problems are by far the most common risk. Look for a chair with proper lumbar support so you aren't bending your spine into and unnatural shape or feeling as if you have to constantly tense your muscles in order to hold yourself up straight. Good ergonomic chairs let you engage core balance and stability muscles, without forcing your major muscle groups to tense up and cause stress injuries.
Obviously, if you're already suffering from a health problem, like carpal tunnel syndrome, you'll want to make sure you get a chair which can help relieve that problem or at the very least not make it any worse.
We've looked at some of the top brands in the computer chair market to save you some time when you're trying to find the perfect ergonomic chair for you.
Steelcase is one of the stand-out performers in this area. As a company celebrating its 100th anniversary in 2012, Steelcase has long been a leading developer of new furniture products. Not all of their products are unique - one of their most popular products, the Leap chair, looks suspiciously like the Aeron chair made by Herman Miller. However, they do offer a few unusual designs, such as the high-backed Siento which is perfect for taller people.
Ergohuman is another top product line, made by Raynor Eurotech. The most distinctive design feature of these chairs is the backrest, which is made up of two separate parts to give support to different parts of your back. Some of the Ergohuman designs also include a headrest. Some of the chairs are padded with leather, whereas others have a mesh design which works almost like a hammock, absorbing your weight and conforming to the natural forms of your body.
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