Author Topic: Office Chair and other things  (Read 3158 times)

MgoSam

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Office Chair and other things
« on: April 24, 2014, 01:36:45 AM »
Hey,

My body is starting to feel the strain from the time I spend each day on the computer at work. I do get plenty of opportunity to get up and move around I know that I have a terrible posture and my knees ache, which may be related to how I sit.

I am going to go to office supply stores like Staples to look a new office chair, mine is terrible. Anyone have any suggestions? Also any idea on how much I should be aiming to spend? I work at a small office, i'm sure I can get work to reimburse me, but don't want it to be too excessive. Also any advice on other things I can do to make my desk more sitting friendly? Any advice on choosing an office desk? Should I also get a footrest, what about a new keyboard and mouse? Thanks for your help!

Sam

gooki

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Re: Office Chair and other things
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2014, 01:58:01 AM »
My 2 cents.

Get a stand up desk (that can also be lowered when you feel the need to sit).

LightTripper

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Re: Office Chair and other things
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2014, 02:08:35 AM »
Definitely worth doing some research and getting it right. I had repeated back problems and have felt things get much better since my office got me a Corrigo chair.  I am about to be off on mat leave and am going to get myself one for home, as I can already feel my back getting worse from being at a laptop at a dining table/chair.

So I got a cheap desktop and adjustable legs from Ikea (so I can make the desk the right height - even though I am tall I found most desks at normal shops are too high compared with what the ergonomics calculators tell me they should be - and what my work desk is). I think many are a good height for writing, rather than typing.  If you Google for desk chair ergonomics I'm sure you will find online calculators that will help you figure out whether your desk is a good height. If it is too low work should be able to raise it for you. If it is too high a footrest may be a good solution.

And then I am going to end up spending a lot (GBP 500, which is about USD 700-800 I think) on the chair. Which may be ridiculous, but being laid up with a bad back is bad enough when you're not responsible for a baby, and I just don't want to take any risks.  It should last for ages and get a lot of use from me and OH (who gets RSI problems that would also benefit from a really good adjustable chair).

I think the keys elements of the chair for me are having a really adjustable back, that you can either fix (quite upright to support you) or be flexible (so it reclines with you) depending on whether you are typing or on the phone, etc, and really good lumbar support (mine has a pump/valve so you can adjust it, which has been great through my pregnancy as it has really hugged my back throughout even as the curve of my back changed).  The Corrigo website also emphasises that they really recommend arm rests, I think because it stops you hunching your shoulders when you are not typing.

Have you seen a physio at all for your back? If so they could be a good source of advice on what to look for in a chair, and what makes to look at?

Well done for looking into this before you end up trapped on the floor for an hour like I was though. It's really not fun, and I had just put my aches before that down to "niggles" and hadn't realised how close I was to a real problem. It's great for you and your employer if you sort this out sooner rather than later.  If your employer is a good size they actually may have dealt with this before? Mine called out a consultant to come and measure me up when I had my problems, and then the chair company came out to set up the chair to fit me.  Yes, I'm sure not cheap. But cheaper than having you trapped at home with a bad back for a week when things get too much.

Good luck!

Sonorous Epithet

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Re: Office Chair and other things
« Reply #3 on: April 26, 2014, 10:32:15 PM »
I got an IKEA Markus, $200. I don't know if that counts as Mustachian but it's certainly a nice chair for the money. It beats out anything you can get at Staples. Like shoes and mattresses, office chairs are one of those things where the cheapest thing is rarely the most frugal.

Nords

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Re: Office Chair and other things
« Reply #4 on: April 27, 2014, 02:25:58 PM »
I am going to go to office supply stores like Staples to look a new office chair, mine is terrible. Anyone have any suggestions? Also any idea on how much I should be aiming to spend? I work at a small office, i'm sure I can get work to reimburse me, but don't want it to be too excessive. Also any advice on other things I can do to make my desk more sitting friendly? Any advice on choosing an office desk? Should I also get a footrest, what about a new keyboard and mouse? Thanks for your help!
My first suggestion would be to go to Craigslist, not a retail store.  Whatever you buy is worth spending up for quality and durability.

Over five years ago we bought two five-year-old Herman Miller Aeron chairs.  They were de rigeur for Silicon Valley startups in the late 1990s, and they come with lifetime warranty service.  (When a part broke, I phoned the chair's serial numbers in to Herman Miller HQ and they actually sent a tech to our house to make the free repairs.)  The chairs' mesh seats/backs are especially nice in a tropical climate, and they have plenty of adjustments.  It's by far the most comfortable chair I've ever owned, and it may be the last one I ever own.  I probably spend 5-8 hours/day with my butt wedged in to mine, and I still feel great when I quit for the day.  Back in 2008 we spent $400 for each, but you might find these selling for under $150 used today.

Staples might be a great place to do showroom shopping, but when you're ready to buy then you could search for your preferred models (or their predecessors) on Craigslist.