Ergonomic Chairs Benefit Health and Well-Being

The chair is easily the most frequently used and underestimated piece of furniture in every office. Office chairs are often taken for granted; yet, investing in a properly designed office chair can make a big impact on your physical health and your overall mood in the workplace. It’s an essential piece of furniture for anyone who needs to sit for his or her job for extended periods of time, and it’s especially important if you work in front of a computer.

What are Ergonomic Chairs?

Ergonomically designed office chairs are work chairs that offer a number of features to accommodate almost every person’s body shape, size, capabilities, limitations, and comfort preferences. Ergonomic designs improve human environment interaction, preserve health and well-being, and are a critical addition to any workplace. When shopping for furniture for your office, it’s important to understand that ergonomic chairs can prevent injury.

Benefits of Ergonomic Chairs

1-01_ergonomicchairs_desknchairAccording to Concept Seating, one reason why ergonomic chairs are so popular is because most people spend almost 8 hours per day at work and want to be comfortable. Other chairs with poor lumbar support can cause strain and long-term negative health effects, leading to increased risk of injury.

Having a chair that provides lumbar support and many adjustable features to accommodate your body’s measurements can alleviate some of the unnecessary strain on the structures of your spine. Properly supporting chairs also help with injuries linked to computer usage and sitting for long periods of time in front of a screen.

If the person using a non-ergonomic chair is also working with a computer, computer-related injuries can come into effect. As mentioned by the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, computer use has been linked to several types of injuries known as upper extremity repetitive stress injuries, cumulative trauma disorders, and work related musculoskeletal disorders. Common disorders directly associated with computer input devices include carpal tunnel syndrome, tendonitis, tenosynovitis, and neck tension syndrome, which affect the hands, wrists, forearms, and neck.

With ergonomic chairs, there is not a one set, standard position. The person using the chair can adjust each piece of the chair so that they are at eye-level with the computer, slightly above the keyboard while typing, and relaxed with plenty of leg room.

Finding the Right Fit

With the increasing trend of developing a healthier workplace with ergonomic chairs, it can be tempting to purchase any chair that is labeled “ergonomic,” but you shouldn’t buy the first one you see. Consider researching different types of ergonomic chairs and the adjustable features of each one in order to find one that works best for you. Just like trying to find the perfect pair of jeans, it needs to fit right.

Although ergonomic chairs are designed to suit a range of people, every person is built differently and every chair is not guaranteed to suit the characteristics of every person. For example, the height could be too short or arm rests too long even with the chair’s adjustability. As a rule of thumb – the optimal seat height is about one quarter of the body height, but it varies depending on the employee’s torso to leg ratio.

1-01_ergonomicchairs_features

According to the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, “a chair becomes ergonomic only when it specifically suits a worker’s size (body dimensions), his or her particular workstation, and the tasks that must be performed there.”

The features you should look for in an ergonomic chair are:

  • Seat height
  • Seat width and depth
  • Lumbar support
  • Backrest
  • Arm rests
  • Swivel
  • Stability
  • Seat material

Do yourself a favor, and put ergonomic chairs on the top of your priority list the next time you decide to buy new office furniture. Your health and work will thank you for the support.

Measuring Your Office Space For Your Desk Ensures a Perfect Office Fit

A desk is usually the largest piece of furniture in your office. Since this is the case, it’s important to carefully consider size and function when selecting your new desk.

Office desks come in a wide variety of shapes, styles, and colors and can have an array of features depending on your needs. If you need more workspace, consider a U-shaped desk. If you are putting multiple desks in a small space, a standard desk may be more appropriate.

Regardless of what features your desk needs to have, the first step in ordering a desk is to measure your office area.

Map It Out

When measuring your office for a new desk, you’ll need to keep space planning in mind. Decide the position and placement of the desk based on what creates the most ample workspace and how the desk will fit into the room. Some options include a floating desk that sits in the middle of the room, a desk that is placed against a wall, or one that is secured into the corner.

1_02-measuringfordesk_measuretapeTo ensure perfect placement of the desk, map out your office. Start with measuring the length and width of your office. When measuring, take notice of all the features in your office including but not limited to windows, doorways, closets, and electrical outlets. Ordering a desk before taking the crucial step of mapping out your office could result in purchasing a desk that doesn’t fit in your office correctly. Graph your office features on a piece of graph paper using a ruler and tape measure.

When looking online for a desk, consider the largest measurements of the desk to ensure it will fit in the desired location. Next, graph your favorite desk location options on your office diagram to visualize how it will fit into your current space. Remember to consider other furniture and desired walkways when trying different desk placements in the office diagram.

Finding the Perfect Desk

When picking out a new desk, consider the measurements of different types of available desks. You may want a U-shaped desk for more workspace, but you may not have the needed space to accommodate the desk. If you are considering a bow-shaped desk, account for the fact that the middle protrudes further than on the sides. Leave room for desk features that will occupy extra space in your office walkways.

If you are placing two desks in a small area, straight desks may be your best option. If you place desks in rows, remember to leave enough space between to guarantee that someone can get up and walk away from the desk without disturbing the other person.

Measure for Doorways and Hallways

1_02-measuringfordesk_doorwaysWhat good is a new desk if you can’t get it into your office? Know the dimensions of the doorways before ordering your desk to ensure that it will fit. If you are ordering a pre-assembled desk, don’t forget to measure all stairs and hallways that the desk must go through to guarantee that it will be able to make the journey from the front door to the office space.

When buying a new desk, measuring your office space should always be the first step. Remember to not only measure and map out your office, but to also measure doorways and hallways to avoid problems when moving your desk.

Guest Seating is Improves Your Guests’ Comfort

You walk into an office and what is the first thing that happens? Hopefully, you are greeted and offered a refreshing cup of coffee, tea, or water and then offered a chair to sit in and wait until you are ready to be seen. It has happened to all of us, you are forced to sit down in an old or uncomfortable chair that is the only option in the reception area and wait to be called for the meeting.

Avoid putting your clients in this situation by providing guest seating chairs that are designed specifically for the comfort of your guests. This will lead to an improved experience for your visitors in the office.

Defining Guest Seating
You may think that guest seating is just another chair, no different from any other chair you buy online or at the store. While that is a common train of thought, it is not true. There are many different types of chairs for seating, all of which are designed for different purposes. For example, you’ve probably never been asked to sit in a computer chair when waiting in a reception area. This is because computer chairs are considered task chairs and are used for extended periods of time. Computer chairs are built to support extended use and business owners just don’t put this type of chair in reception areas.

Guest seating however, is only used for short periods of time. This type of seating serves a different purpose than other seating-type options and should be chosen for your guests’ comfort.

guestseating_propertiesProperties of Guest Seating
Guest seating is designed for comfort, aesthetics, and durability. Since different clients will be frequently coming and going on a regular basis, guest seating is designed to hold its shape and support through multiple uses by different people. They tend to be made of sturdy material to stand the test of time.

Unlike task seating that is not made for visual appeal, guest seating is designed with visual appeal kept in mind. Companies understandably want to offer their clients a seat that looks nice and professional and is made of of high quality materials. Guest seating is created with this standard as a main focus. You will find guest seating in all types of styles and looks so your office design can stay consistent and your guests impressed.

Guest seating is often made to offer extreme comfort and luxury to its user. While having proper arm and lumbar support, guest seating also tends to be plusher than other seating types. This offers additional comfort to the user for short time periods.

guestseating_seatingChoosing the Perfect Guest Seating for Your Office
Now that you understand what guest seating is and the different properties it has, you can start selecting specific pieces for your office. When choosing, you’ll want to consider your company’s industry, office style, and the features you want your guest seating to have.

If your company is in an industry focused on technology then you’ll most likely want to choose chairs that fit with that industry’s style. Your industry goes hand in hand with your office style when choosing seating, so if you are in a modern industry and your office is designed in the industrial or minimalist style then you aren’t going to want to choose conventional guest seating and vise versa. Choose guest seating that reflects your company culture and what your company provides.

In addition, look for specific features you want your guest seating chairs to have when selecting office chairs. Some guest seating options come with arm support while others do not, and some are covered in fabric while others are made of a mesh material. Find guest seating that has the style and features you want your clients to enjoy when they visit.

Guest seating is an important addition to your business and makes an impact on your client’s impression of you and your company. When choosing guest seating for your reception or office area, be sure to select chairs that fit your company’s culture and offers comfort, style, and durability.

Each Type of Office Desk Offers Different Benefits

Having the opportunity to select a new desk for your office allows you to choose one that will suit you and your working habits. As you know, not all desks are created equal. Some are suited for reception areas while others are more appropriate for a single office.

Knowing the characteristics of each type of desk will help you choose the right one. The desk you choose should make a positive difference in your day-to-day work. Whether you need more surface area, storage space, or multi-functional properties, finding a desk that suits you will improve your daily work experience.

straight-desksStraight Desks

The standard straight desk is versatile in its functionality options. A straight desk can be placed against a wall, back to back against another straight desk, or stand alone in the center of the room without looking strange or losing functionality. This desk type has a decent amount of surface workspace and can be combined with a file cabinet for additional storage space.

Straight desks come in different variations to suit the style the user wants to achieve. Options such as bow front, open back, and feature detail all allow this type of desk to suit every workspace. It is usually designed for small to medium sized areas and offers an effective workspace for the standard daily work of one person and focus.

Credenzas

Credenzas are not actually considered stand-alone desks, however many people utilize them as a desk. Credenzas are usually used as a secondary work surface and paired with a straight desk when space is running short. This type of work surface is smaller than a regular desk with less surface workspace, being smaller in width and depth. This desk is ideal for small office spaces or someone wanting additional work room.

l-shaped-desksL-Shaped Desks

This type of desk is more constrained in placement option but offers other benefits. L-shaped desks work well placed against a wall or put into a corner. Depending on your office, you may be confined to a few placement options with a L-shaped desk. While placement may be limited, L-shaped desks offer larger surface workspaces and depending on size, can be used by multiple people.

If not being used by multiple people, L-shaped desks allow for a divided workspace for someone focusing on more than one task. This type of desk takes up more room than a straight desk but can still usually fit comfortably in a medium sized office and works well in a large office. Measuring your office is advised if you are considering this type of desk.

U-Shaped Desks

The U-shaped desk is the biggest desk option available. Like the L-shaped desk it can offer multiple workstations or can be effective for someone who needs a divided workstation. It offers the most surface workspace but comes at the price of extremely limited positioning options.

A U-shaped desk needs to be placed in a large office where it can fit placed against a wall or stand in the center of the room. Executives often use this type of desk because of the multifunctional section options. They offer the most storage and can come with wardrobe space in addition to file space. If you are considering this desk type, measuring your office is a must to ensure a comfortable fit.

Choosing a desk for your office can mean the difference between organized work and piles of papers scattered everywhere. When choosing your office desk, consider each type and what it can offer you in terms of space, organization, and functionality. Always measure your office space to ensure your ideal desk fits comfortably and choose one that supports your daily work.