If you sit in a desk chair eight (or more) hours a day, whether that's at home or in a traditional office setting, you know how important finding a chair that's comfortable and healthy for your back can be. Of course, you want a chair that looks nice, but for most people comfort trumps all.
Unfortunately, it's often difficult to tell if a chair will pass the comfort test by just sitting in it briefly at the office furniture store. However, looking for a few specific qualities in a chair can help ensure that your new chair will not only be attractive, but will be comfortable during those long work days.
Here's what you should look for in a new office chair.
1. Easy to adjust height. Having your chair at the ideal height for your desk is essential to keeping your back healthy and avoiding wrist stress while you type. However, that perfect height varies from person to person (and from desk to desk.) The ideal desk chair can be adjusted easily to fit any individual and any desk height.
2. Back support. In addition, you'll want to choose a chair that offers adequate back support, particularly in the lower back (lumbar) region.
3. Good armrests. Armrests help support your forearms and thus help prevent stress to your wrists while typing. Look for armrests that are comfortable and place your arms perpendicular to your desk.
4. A solid metal base. Chairs with plastic bases and castors are generally less expensive. However, they are much more prone to cracking than chairs with steel or aluminum bases, and the castors often break. It is better to invest in a solidly-constructed chair than have to replace your chair frequently.
5. Breathable fabric. Another factor to consider when choosing a chair in which to spend your office life is whether that chair will be hot and uncomfortable in the summer after a few hours. Breathable fabrics, such as mesh and gore-tex, can help keep you from perspiring and sticking to your chair. Choosing a fabric that's washable and stain-resistant can also be a big plus if you happen to spill your coffee or drop your lunch.
Buying a new desk chair can be a little intimidating. However, if you look for a chair with good back support, that's easy to adjust, that has a solid base and that is made of breathable and washable fabric, you can make sure you purchase the right chair for you.