Although I have never been able to verify its veracity, on one occasion they told me a story that impressed me vividly. He was just a job chair salesman, and he told me while I was sitting on one of the models I was selling and testing it. At that time, I started my, already long, the career as a freelance journalist and was groping for the possibility of acquiring a new chair and a somewhat higher price than I already had. While rehearsing postures, the salesman asked me about my profession.
When I answered him, he looked at me worried and said: “What I feared; You need something better than this and don’t think I’m not serious. ” It happened to tell me the story of a famous American journalist who was to be signed as a columnist for the New York Times to write a piece weekly. The newspaper and the journalist already had the contract ready and only remained the approval of the insurance company that covered the newspaper. This one sent a reporter’s house to an expert to check the working conditions.
It was supposed to be a mere procedure and at the most, the expert would appreciate that the columnist did not smoke in his workspace. But the technician showed up with a tape measure and insisted on measuring both the proportions of the columnist and the Chair and the table in which he worked. At the end of the inspection, he warned that he was going to discourage his signing because he did not use the table or the appropriate chair. The journalist, though annoyed, took it half-jokingly because he did not believe that it would affect his signing…
Until he was called from the newspaper asking him to buy a new and adaptable chair or else the insurance company would not endorse his signing. “Do you think the expert was not right? “, the salesman Let me finish his story. Me, for every answer I shrugged and the man then explained to me that the expert had concluded that the probability of the columnist being injured in that chair, given his weight and age, was high, and in that case, the insurer should run with the expenses of Recap Erosion. “Note If a good office chair is important; It’s where he’s going to spend most of the time he’s not sleeping.”
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The back, the main source of injury
I left that store with a brand new chair and 500 euros less in my pocket. I do not know if he had responded that it was philatelic or jeweler had adapted the story to my circumstance, no doubt he was an excellent seller, but the truth is that the chair lasted his good seven years and when he burst, I changed it to a simple dining chair. The result: three lumbar protrusions that continue to tormenting me ten years later and condition many aspects of my non-work life.
So yes: Choosing well an office chair is important especially for our back, but also for other aspects of our health such as joints or blood circulation. According to the data collected in 2007 the fifth European Survey on working conditions, carried out by the European Agency for Health and safety at work, more than one third of workers suffer back pain, and this is the costliest health problem is meant for them as well as the second cause of the visit to the doctor and the third reason for surgery.
The survey of the European Agency for Health and safety at work was not belting to the field of the offices, but it weighed the risk of all types of physical work. But it did make clear that once a back injury occurred, the risk of recidivism was rising and the importance of working conditions increased to prevent the evil from cronificaraing.
The legendary North American office chair designer Herman Miller Group launched a study on ergonomics in 2005, ensuring that around 85% of office employees experience back complications in the lumbar area from 50 years. It is true that this manufacturer is interested in the business, but deserves all consideration as an author of the Aeron chair, a myth of the early years of the 21st century for being the quintessential chair of the first startup that generated the technological revolution. In it were seated Marc Andersen, founder of Netscape, or Sean Parker, a creator of Napster, to cite examples.
The chair matters, but not so much the mark
Aeron, which is still manufactured today and has a price around 700 euros, although not sold in Spain, is characterized by having both the backrest and the seat made with an elastic mesh based on a material called commercially follicle, high elasticity, and resistance. Its main advantage is that it allows the perspiration and the circulation of the blood, besides regulating the posture that the user takes because it tends to correct bad positions. We’re talking about the Ferrari of the office chairs.
There is also a range equivalent to the Mercedes; For example, the chairs of the British manufacturer Steelcase, with their models please, LEAP, Think or Let’s B, which round the 600 euros each one and is not sold in Spain, at least at the retail level. In any case, it is not necessary to spend these amounts to ensure our health under the command of an office chair. There are models in the market that for little more than 200 euros can meet a good part of the postulates that claims a good chair.
So if we are not willing to buy a container of chairs from Steelcase or Apanarnos to send us an Aeron from the United States, it is best to read the advice that is told below or at least keep them in mind at the time of proving the one that may be our Next office chair. If the Chair in question complies with most of the specifications reported, we will reduce the likelihood of injury, especially if we make frequent breaks in our workday to walk and stretch.
What’s important in an office chair
SEAT: It is very important that it is adjustable in height since we will be able to fix the position of our torso with respect to the work table. If the chair is too low, it will suffer our lumbar area. If it is too high, we will force the vertebrae and muscles of the dorsal and trapeziums. It should also allow modifying its placement with respect to the backrest so that our abdomen does not look compressed, which would cause us circulation problems and digestives. As for the size, it should be wide enough so that we can sit loosely in the central part and have space around. Also, the front of the seat should be tilted downward so that it does not depress the back of the knees or difficult the circulation of the legs.
Backrest: It is one of the most important parts of the chair. It should be adjusted to the back and provide support in the lumbar area. It is advisable to be adjustable in inclination and that the Chair offers the possibility of regulating its firmness and its fixation or mobility of the backrest. In this respect, verticulitis backups are good for days that do not exceed five hours, but if we are going to be longer, we better try synchronized chairs, where the backrest Vascular at the same time that the seat slides forward or backward, with what never We enter into postures of compression of the spine or the abdomen.
Backrest Height: It is highly recommended that the height be adjustable and that the backrest is long enough to be able to cover at least the entire back. Some models allow adding a headrest in the upper part that helps to rest the vertebrae of the dorsal zone without subjecting the column to excessive torsion.
ARMRESTS: They must allow us to maintain a comfortable posture, with the arms forming an angle of 90 º while writing on the computer, while also supporting the elbows and forearms. They are also used for ease of incorporation and must be strong enough to support our weight when we get up from the chair. On the other hand, it is advisable to opt for models that allow us to vary the height and position of the armrests, as well as to regulate their separation from the seat of the Chair. They should not be able to squeeze our hips or prevent us from being placed near the table.
Base: The wheels on the base allow for greater comfort to change positions or to move in the workstation. The base must have five points of support. Some models allow placing different types of wheels with various levels of hardness, ideal to adapt the chair to the different soils that we can find: carpet, parquet, stoneware, etc.
Upholstery: For greater comfort, the upholstery must be breathable and designed to withstand continued use.
Footrest: Although not an element that normally forms part of the chair, the footrest is indicated to help us adopt the correct posture. The inclination has to be adjustable and must be made in non-slip materials that allow the correct attachment of both the feet and the fixation on the ground.