If we work in an office, we will probably sit on the one chair for hours every day for years and only very rarely get the opportunity to change that chair. This is a situation which has been going on for decades and as a result, there are many old people that are suffering from severe back and neck pains. This is something though that could soon change, thanks to the relatively new science called ergonomics. Ergonomics is the study of how everyday practices and objects can affect our bodies and one of the studies showed that the old style office chairs which have been in use for decades were responsible for most of the older people’s back and neck pains. Once the problem had been identified, chair manufacturers quickly came up with new designs for chairs, especially office chairs and made them available to buy. Different manufacturers of course, came up with their own versions of ergonomic office chairs but the most ergonomic of them are the ones which have several adjustable features.
Some of the points which the ergonomic studies revealed were that the old office chairs did not take into account the height of the person using the chair and so some people would have to look up to work whilst others would have to look down. They determined that the most ergonomic chair should be of a height to allow the user to look straight ahead to do their work. They also concluded that although the old style chairs had backrests, most people could not make use of them as they would have to sit forward to work. They also found that where an old style office chair had armrests, those armrests were in a position that could impede a person’s work. To facilitate to the findings of the studies, manufacturers produced chairs which had adjustable heights, different seat sizes and adjustable armrests. Some of the new ergonomic office chairs may also have headrests and if they do they will give support to the head instead of the neck taking all the strain.
All of these ergonomic office chairs though, are only ergonomic provided that any necessary adjustments are made in order to fully be beneficial to the person sitting in the chair. Each office chair, unlike in the past, is not interchangeable with another, unless it is adjusted accordingly. Although many offices do still have the old style chairs, one by one those offices are changing their chairs for more ergonomic ones which will hopefully mean that future generations of older people, will not have to suffer as many back and headaches as before. If you work in an office and do not already have an ergonomic office chair, you should try and buy one yourself or convince your boss that it would also be in their interests to replace your chair for a more ergonomic one. Work can already be a bind without it having to create health problems later.