Working from home comes with its good things and bad things.
One of the bad things that I’m guilty of is not taking care of my health.
Since April 2009, most of my time was spent working from home in front of my laptop. I have set up a small home-office, but at times I would work from my couch, from my bed, or sometimes from a coffee shop.
One thing that is common about all of these situations is that my sitting posture is not good. It keeps changing according to the place where I’m sitting. In the last 4 and a half years, my posture started changing.
In a recent visit to my doctor, he suggested me to actively work on my sitting posture if I wanted to avoid severe back pain in the future.
I thought I was maintaining a good sitting posture until my doctor warned me otherwise.
Well, I ended up buying the best available ergonomic chair to combat this issue.
This post is for anyone who is concerned about their body posture due to long sitting hours.
Since most of the Shouters here are infopreneurs (making money by gathering and selling electronic information) or freelancers who work from home, I believe it’s a good idea to let you know about the best sitting posture and also why you should consider an ergonomic chair.
What Are Ergonomic Office Chairs?
According to scientific studies, people with sitting jobs have twice the rate of cardiovascular diseases compared to people with a non-sitting job.
Your body posture, in general, matters a lot for a long and healthy survival.
- How you walk
- How you pull up weight
- How you sleep
- How you sit
These are all equally important things.
Now think about the time you spend sitting every day.
When you are going to the office, inside your office, or when you are back from office, you spent most of the time sitting.
If you are someone like me who works from home and happens to spend more than 10 hours sitting at the same place, you have to actively acknowledge the importance of having a good sitting posture. After acknowledging, you need to work on sitting properly as suggested by doctors and scientists.
Now, let’s talk about Ergonomics.
According to the Wiki article:
Ergonomics (or human factors) is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design to optimize human well-being and overall system performance.
Here is an image showing the best sitting posture for a computer user:
Now, we all have different body sizes and shapes, and one chair will not fit all.
To ensure that our body gets the best out of our sitting posture, the best ergonomic chair needs to have a few adjustments like:
- Seat height
- Seat width and depth
- Lumbar support (ie lower back support)
- Armrests (height and tilt)
Another factor which matters a lot is seat fabric.
If you are sitting on a chair for hours, your seat fabric should be good enough to distribute the pressure and keep a good flow of blood everywhere.
Most of us make mistakes by buying a non-ergonomic chair which uses foam or other fabrics. These don’t distribute the weight equally, and thus creates pain in our lower backs or makes us feel tired after constant sitting.
Here is an interesting video that shows how to turn bad sitting posture into good sitting posture:
As it is, most car companies spend countless hours on engineering the best seat for the cars to give us optimum comfort for long drives.
Similarly, it’s vital for anyone with a job that requires a long time sitting to have an ergonomic desk chair.
Do remember, ergonomic office chairs are one of many things to keep our body in a proper condition as we age.
For health conscious people:
What makes the Herman Miller Embody chair the best ergonomic chair?
After realizing the importance of good sitting posture, I started doing my research for the best ergonomic chair on the market.
I had a regular $100 chair from a local furniture company, but it was not even close to “Ergonomic”. Undoubtedly, sitting on my $100 chair was quite good, but for long sitting hours, it was not comfortable.
The first recommendation I found was the “Herman Miller Aeron chair” which cost close to $1,100. I found a local distributor and went to the showroom to check it out.
After reaching there, the store owner (who was quite knowledgeable about Ergonomics) explained to me in detail about the importance of good sitting posture, what makes Herman Miller’s chairs stand out, and the latest product- the “Herman Miller Embody chair”.
The Embody chair was almost $1,000 more than the Aeron chair, but after researching about the Aeron chair vs. Embody chair, it was a no-brainer that the Embody chair was way better in terms of:
- …and so on.
Since I’m not a chair expert, you can check out this comparison post for the Aeron chair vs. Embody chair.
(Below you will find my detailed Herman Miller Embody chair review.)
I purchased the black colored Embody chair which cost about $1,761.
The best part about the Herman Miller chair is it comes with a 12-year warranty, so once you buy this chair, you don’t have to worry about anything for the next 12 years.
Moreover, 40% of the chair is built with recyclable material, so it’s eco-friendly.
I later learned that many high-end executives and big companies use the Herman Miller chair as they are one of the giants in the “healthy furniture” industry.
Things you should know:
Different variants of the Embody chair:
The base model comes in a black color, but you can choose from different colors (different colors cost an extra $200).
Embody vs. Aeron: Which one to buy?
If you are on a tight budget, you should obviously opt for Aeron which is $1,000 cheaper than the Embody chair. But if money is not an issue, definitely opt for the Embody chair as it offers better Ergonomics and support for your body.
Where can you buy Herman Miller chairs?
The best place to buy Herman Miller ergonomic furniture is from their official store page over here.
There you will get lots of customization options.
But a cheaper solution is to buy a brand new or (refurbished Herman Miller chair) from Amazon over here.
If you are in India, a good idea is to locate the nearest dealer in your town and grab one from there. You can find all Indian Herman Miller dealers over here.
Should you stop worrying about your sitting posture after buying an ergonomic chair?
Ergonomic chairs help your sitting posture, improve blood circulation, and offer other health benefits, but you need to work on other things like:
- Taking a timely break.
- Maintaining your distance from the computer screen.
- Occasional exercise in between long sitting periods.
This will keep you healthy while sitting for long hours.
Overall, if you are someone who cares about their health, you should buy an ergonomic chair to keep your body in shape and pain-free.
(This article was written while sitting in the Herman Miller Embody chair. It’s definitely worth it.)
Also remember, when you buy any ergonomic chair (Herman Miller Embody or any other), it will take a couple of days to set your chair in the best possible settings to make it compatible with your body shape and size.
Refer to the above image to understand what a good body posture should be like.
(Also, avoid crossing your legs while sitting to allow for better blood circulation.)
Do let me know which ergonomic chair you are using. Also, if you are an existing Herman Miller Embody chair user, feel free to share you review and feedback in the comments below.
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