Incorrect office chairs could lead to back problems

It is important to have a well supported office chair considering that we spend most of our working day sitting in front of the desk and/or computer.

There is a large amount of strain on our spines in the seated position, so the more support our chairs provide the lower the chance of developing those aches and pains at the end of a long day in the office.

When choosing a chair follow these few points:
  • Your chair should have a full back rest that curves to support your lower back. When your lower back is properly supported, the rest of your spine is in its correct alignment leading to reduced tension in the shoulders and neck.
  • There should be a height adjustment as well as adjustable armrests.
  • Tension adjustment is also something to look for as this allows adequate support regardless of your size.
  • Wheels on the chair allow you to move in and out of your work space without twisting your spine, therefore reduce the amount of strain on your spine.
  • When sitting on your chair, your buttocks should be right at the back of the chair.
  • Your knees should be at the same level as your hips. If your feet do not reach the floor in this position, place your feet on a block underneath your desk.
  • Your arm rests should be the height of your elbows when your arms are relaxed by your side, but lower than your desk so that you can slide your chair right underneath the desk when working and prevent leaning forward to reach your desk.
  • If your chair is the best money can buy and you have followed the correct seating posture, yet you still suffer from aches and pains, you probably need to have your spine and muscles assessed by an experienced professional.
Written by: Dr Helen Schlebusch