It always surprises me how much time we spend choosing and office chair compared to a chair for home. Usually we will spend many hours finding the right chair for home while choosing an office chair usually consists of grabbing the nearest available one and checking all the wheels are there! Before you go and grab the next available chair just workout how long you'll be sat in it.
The main problem people face with their office chairs is that they were handed down by the previous occupants of their desk. it is almost impossible that the former owner was exactly the same size and shape as the latest owner. If this has happened to you or happens in the future there are things you can do to make the situation a bit better.
The first thing you need to do is to check out the full range of adjustment that your chair has. Start at the bottom and adjust the height so that your arms are at a natural and comfortable height. Then adjust the arms so that you can rest your arms on them. Finally adjust the back so that you get firm support from it. If any of the adjustments don't work or you can't get comfortable then ask for a new chair.
It never ceases to amaze me how many employers don't pay attention to the condition of their office chairs. It's well known that old and poorly adjusted office chairs are a major source of back problems. These problems can result in hundreds of lost working ours through people needing time off. If you are an employer it will benefit you in the long run to ensure that your staff are sitting comfortably.
There are several things that you should consider before buying a new office chair.
1. Does it have a full range of adjustment
2. What Material Is it
3. The style of construction
Being able to fully adjust an office chair means that a new chair can be used for a range of people with different shapes and sizes. It would be great if we were all the same but unfortunately we aren't so we need as large a level of adjustment as possible.
The material used in the construction of the chair is very important and often over looked. Leather may look great in a catalogue but on a hot summers day it can become unbearable. Mesh backed chairs give much better ventilation and due to the nature of the material it can act as suspension and give support to the user.
You should always test as many office chairs as possible before you decide to buy. As any quick glance through an office supplies catalogue will show you there are multiple styles and shapes of office chair. Before settling on one design try the alternatives you may find that a mid backed or a low backed chair are more comfortable for you. Also consider your environment, if your office has a wooden or tile floor then you may need to consider looking for a chair without casters.