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Rezo Bragin
Rezo Bragin

What Office Chair Should I Buy

Working in an office typically involves spending a great deal of time sitting in an office chair - a position that adds stress to the structures in the spine. Therefore, to avoid developing or compounding back problems, it's important to have an office chair that's ergonomic and that supports the lower back and promotes good posture.

what office chair should i buy

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There are many types of ergonomic chairs available for use in the office. No one type of office chair is necessarily the best, but there are some things that are very important to look for in a good ergonomic office chair. These things will allow the individual user to make the chair work well for his or her specific needs.

Working from your couch or bed sounds comfortable, but try doing it for hours at a time. It simply isn't practical to have your computer and anything else you need right in front of you while you try to sit back all nice and comfy. If you're working from home for any substantial amount of time, you should set up an ergonomic workspace that you can use without hurting your arms, back, or neck. That means you need a proper chair, ideally in front of a desk or table.

Office chairs are meant for long periods of productive sitting; they should enable you to keep your hands on your keyboard and mouse without stretching awkwardly. You have plenty of options to choose from, starting at around $100 and going well over $1,000. With that in mind, these are our top picks for office and gaming chairs, and what you should know before buying yours.

The Herman Miller Aeron is iconic and plenty swear by it as one of the best office chairs of all time. As such, no list is complete without a mention of it. We haven't tested this model for ourselves, however, and think the Herman Miller X Logitech G Embody (which we did test) is even nicer.

Secretlab's gaming chairs have long been among our favorites. Their build quality and materials are excellent, and the company tends to throw in some clever bits of engineering, too. The large and sturdy Titan EVO 2022 features adjustable lumbar support as well as a magnetic head pillow, making it the most comfortable chair we've sat on in quite some time.

If you want a high-end, well-made, conventional gaming chair, the Titan EVO 2022 is one of the best values. It isn't cheap, but it's a substantial upgrade over the gaming chairs you typically find in stores for half the price.

Cooler Master's Caliber X1C gaming chair is another outstanding pick. The C in the name stands for its smooth, sturdy cloth upholstery. It's a solid, well-built desk chair with generous capacity and the ability to recline.

Many higher-end gaming chairs now have fabric options, but the X1C's material feels the best out of those we have tried. Fabric gaming chairs are also great for cat owners because your pet might poke holes in the PU leather of non-fabric models.

For around the same price as a Herman Miller Aeron, you can get six Respawn Specters. This chair is breathable, springy, and comfortable, plus it can tilt. It's an excellent pick if you want a minimalist mesh chair without spending maximalist money.

Andaseat's gaming chairs start in the budget range, but the Kaiser is certainly at the higher end of its lineup. It's still a little bit less expensive than the Titan EVO 2022, however. It offers nearly all of the same features of that chair and a similar (though not quite as premium) feel.

If you want a Secretlab-like chair for a bit less, both Cooler Master and Andaseat's premium models are great options. The Kaiser 3 is especially similar to the Titan Evo, down to the knobs for adjusting the built-in lumbar support.

Did you think the Aeron was Herman Miller's most comfortable and expensive office chair? Think again. The Embody is even more ergonomic and pricey. Its taller seat back features dozens of "pixel" points that conform to the shape of your back, offering ideal support from your shoulders down. The Herman Miller X Logitech G Embody Gaming Chair we reviewed is simply a blue variant of this model and I can attest to its supreme comfort.

This is for gamers, especially content creators, who can drop four digits on a chair and need to seriously consider long-term ergonomics. If you spend a lot of time on the keyboard, gamepad, or microphone, this is the chair to beat. Herman Miller also notably provides a 12-year warranty, which is the longest we've seen in the category.

The Razer Enki X is a high-quality and comfortable gaming chair that's also quite affordable. It features a diamond quilt pattern and uses two types of foam padding to provide different levels of firmness for the seat and back. The X part of the model name means it's a scaled-back version of the standard Enki gaming chair, which costs $100 more. It lacks the latter's tilt functionality and some armrest position adjustability, but can still at least recline.

Ikea is always a go-to option when you're shopping for furniture on a budget. The Markus is a tall but otherwise minimalist office chair; it has a simple, slim mesh back that breathes and built-in lumbar support. And while you're at Ikea, you can pick up a Kolon floor protector to go with it.

Ideally, you should go see and feel furniture before you buy it. That isn't an option with most gaming chairs, which is why our reviews are so useful. You might be able to sit in a generic office chair before you take it home, however. Your local big-box office supply store like OfficeMax or Staples should have a bunch of desk chairs of various builds and prices set up, like this Lockland chair from Staples. Try one out yourself!

This is a chair to consider after you've sat in it. Go to Staples or anywhere else that has this chair or a chair like it on display, and try it. Then, decide if you want to spring for a more premium option.

Countless cheap office chairs are available online, with hundreds listed on sites like Amazon (including the Amazon Basics model here), Walmart, and Wayfair. There's nothing wrong with considering any of these models, but it's a bit of a gamble: You might end up with a comfortable, sturdy desk chair, or you might get stuck with a hunk of junk that hurts your back. You can't do much about trying chairs from Amazon or Wayfair before you buy them, but you might be able to find some at Target or Walmart. The in-store selection won't be nearly as good as on the store's website, but you can probably find some options you can take for a spin.

What's the difference between office chairs and gaming chairs? Not much. Gaming chairs, in general, are bulky office chairs with more considerations for sitting in different positions for longer periods. They usually have tall backs with head and lumbar cushions, as well as provide more support than cheap office chairs. They also tend to be better made, with higher weight limits and more considerations for larger users. Gaming chairs typically offer a wider range of colors and designs, too.

Most gaming chairs also have a recline function that office chairs lack. A lever on the right side of the seat lets you tilt the back and recline while the seat stays level. You shouldn't use this feature while you're on video calls with your boss, but it's a nice option to have when you're done with work (or between meetings) and want to sit back.

Gaming chairs tend to cost more than office chairs, but the extra money is usually worth it, as the additional support and better build quality go a long way. Gaming chairs also usually have warranties of several years, while cheaper office chairs might have ones that last just 90 days.

In addition, office chairs can have low or high backs (we've even seen a couple with no backs, but at that point, they're more like desk stools), which can make a big difference in how they feel. Cheaper chairs tend to have low backs that end around or just under the shoulders. They might support your lower half, but they won't do much for your upper back and head. Still, if you mostly work by leaning forward rather than sitting upright or slightly back, that level of support should be sufficient.

Lumbar support is also important, but this is harder to test. Most office chairs claim to have some form of lumbar support, but it might be as simple as a slight arc against your lower back. Try to get a close look at the chair design to get some idea of how much support it can provide.

Tilt is a helpful feature that adds to your overall comfort and range of movement when you sit for long periods. Few office chairs have the reclining function of gaming chairs, but you might still be able to sit back a bit on them. Many models have an adjustable tilt that lets the entire seat move backward across a limited angle when you lean, and that springs back to the upright position when you stop. This tilt uses a scissor hinge on the base of the chair where the bottom sits on the gas cylinder that adjusts seat height, and usually features a knob that lets you adjust how freely it moves. You can also usually restrict the tilt completely via a lever.

Leather, even the PU leather that most affordable "pleather" chairs use, tends to look the nicest, but it also wears down the fastest. It scratches and tears easily, especially if you have cats. Fabric is usually much more sturdy, but is the easiest to stain and can collect the most odors. Mesh chairs are the lightest, most springy, and the least likely for pets to want to sit on, but that material provides the chair's entire support structure, unlike the foam padding in fabric and leather chairs.

Short of moving to one of our top-rated cities for working from home, you can also improve your experience by purchasing a standing desk, a new webcam, a best-in-class headset, or any of our other must-have home office devices. Once your setup is in place, make sure to check out our 20 tips for working from home.

Yes, the best ergonomic office chairs can help prevent back pain in the first place and can also help to alleviate it if you're already suffering. That said, if you do already suffer from back pain, we recommend visiting a doctor as well as considering a new chair because there may be other underlying causes. 041b061a72


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