Blog | Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Right Office Chairs
Whether you work from home or commute to the office, finding a high-quality office chair can be vital to your overall productivity and comfort. You might be wondering how to choose the right office or reception chair to keep you and your team comfortable even when sitting for long periods. You need an ergonomic solution that fits your unique usage needs and matches your office aesthetic.
A wide range of chair options are available for offices, so you’ll want to remember some primary considerations when making your selection. Look at our professional’s office chair buying guide to help you make the best decisions for your office.
Types of Office Chairs
What seating option is best for office work? Your best option will depend on how you’ll be using the chair. Consider what’s most critical for your selection process — comfort for sitting long hours, aesthetic appeal or functionality? What selections would work best in your current office space size? Deciding on your top selection criteria can help you narrow down your search and find a solution that ultimately makes you happy.
Explore your purchase options based on your needs.
If you need to work at a higher surface, whether at a drafting table or a standing-height desk, a drafting stool or chair makes your work easier. Because it is taller than the average chair, its height allows for a more convenient transition from sitting to standing while you work at a raised table or counter. It’s ideal if you do work such as architecture that requires drawing and reviewing drafts.
These chairs are available with simple, backless stool designs or with comfy backrests and armrests. You have many varieties to choose from for your work environment, so you can make your decision based on how long you’ll need to use the drafting chair each day.
Big and Tall Chairs
When working in an office all day, you want a chair that fits your body dimensions. Big and tall chairs provide an ideal solution for those with larger body types.
Working in a cramped, too-small chair can significantly harm your posture and overall comfort, so finding a chair with the correct measurements can dramatically increase your office experience. To help you choose an optimal size, look up the chair’s exact measurements and ensure it has dimensions that work for you.
Accent and Reception Chairs
In some cases, you may need chairs that aren’t for hours-long use. If you’re looking for options to welcome guests or quickly set up a small meeting in an office, accent and reception chairs can set the tone. These types of chairs offer comfort and aesthetic appeal.
Available in bold colors and eye-catching designs, these chairs can modernize your office or demonstrate your business’ polished, elegant image. Pick chairs that work with the office decor and lend an air of professionalism to the space. The right furniture choices can help make an excellent first impression on visitors and enhance the workplace environment for employees.
Stackable And Folding Chairs
If you need flexible seating options for a meeting room, you’ll want stackable chairs available for the space. You can find comfortable and elegant folding chairs that work with the area and are easy to stow away when not in use.
When you’re looking at your options, consider what works best with your space constraints. Think about whether stacking or folding chairs would be easier to use when you need to store them. You’ll also want to consider how long the chairs you choose will take to set up and take down.
What is the best office chair for sitting long hours? Ergonomic designs are one of the best solutions to protect your health. Similar to task chairs in overall design, ergonomic chairs have high armrests and backs, and they are typically mobile on wheels. They stand out due to their enhanced design features optimized to reduce operator fatigue and encourage good posture.
Here are some ergonomic features they may offer.
Lower and upper back support
Adjustable height to fit your body
Mesh or leather-like material options for increased comfort
The classic task chair has wheels and can slide easily under a desk at the office. They work particularly well for tighter spaces or collaborative work environments where you need more mobility. Budget-friendly and space-saving, this chair can be an excellent solution for day-to-day needs at the office. They come in a wide selection of materials and designs to fit your unique requirements.
Alternative Office Chairs
Do you want some additional options for seating? Explore alternative office chairs like stability balls or kneeling chairs. These pieces can help engage your core, reduce stress on your back and even out weight distribution. They’re excellent alternatives to sitting in one position all day.
Considerations for Choosing Office and Reception Chairs
Here are our top tips for choosing the right office chair.
1. Measure the Seat Dimensions
Having the correct seat dimensions to fit your body is vital for your day-to-day comfort and productivity. If you get a seat that’s too roomy or too narrow, you might have to hunch forward or sit in a cramped position for hours. To help you find the best fit, try out a few different chairs and decide what dimensions feel most comfortable. Then, keep those measurements in mind and look up the exact dimensions of any chair you’re considering.
2. Look for Adjustable Height
The ideal height for your seat keeps your hips about level with your thighs to help reduce back and hip strain. A chair that’s too high can lead to poor posture as you lean forward to work, and a chair that’s too short can put extra strain on your back if your knees are higher than your hips.
To help you stay as comfortable as possible, look for chairs with adjustable height options so you can get your position right. Check that the chair is easy to adjust and is durable for long-term use.
3. Consider Tilt Control
With an adjustable chair back, you can adapt the chair to help you sit most comfortably. According to research, having a slightly reclined position in your chair can help you protect your back and reduce operator fatigue. A chair with tilt control can make finding that perfect angle easier and keep you comfortable for long-term use.
4. Get Lumbar Support
Supporting and protecting the lumbar area of your spine is vital to your overall health and comfort. Located approximately between your chest and hips, your five lumbar vertebrae are the largest in your body, and it’s critical to give them adequate support.
You have a few options for lumbar support. One is to get a specially designed chair to help you maintain good posture with an S-shaped back that supports your lumbar region. You could also buy a straight-backed seat, then invest in a lumbar support cushion that you can adjust to your preferences.
5. Choose Your Materials and Padding
When sitting for hours, you’ll want breathable, comfortable materials. Many different upholstery and construction options are available, so choose what works best for you. Remember that firmer chairs will likely provide more long-term support to your body and help you avoid slouching in your seat.
Whether you want luxurious leather chairs, a breathable mesh material or a soft plush is up to you. Remember to look for ergonomic features along with the materials you like.
6. Consider Mobility
Having a wheeled chair is convenient for consulting with a colleague, turning around to listen to an announcement or adjusting your position at your desk. With a swivel office chair, you can get mobility for all your day-to-day requirements, so make sure the chair can hold up. Take a look at customer reviews and inspect possible chairs for durable wheels and casters. You’ll also want to ensure the chair wheels have enough resistance to stay put when you don’t want them to pivot.
7. Explore Armrest Options
Getting a chair with good armest support can help protect muscles in your shoulders and forearms. By reducing tension across your upper body, armrests can reduce fatigue and help you keep you comfortable on the job. However, each person’s body has unique dimensions, so a fixed armrest might not be a good fit for you. Armrests that are too low or too high can cause discomfort and muscle strain.
One practical option is to get armrests with adjustable height options. It’s best to position your arms to keep your wrists about level with your keyboard. You can also look at armrest options that allow you to adjust the angle and width to fit your preferences best.
Why Choosing the Right Chair Is Crucial
Your office chair can have long-term effects on your health, comfort and overall workplace morale, which is why it’s such a critical investment. You can gain wide-ranging benefits from getting the right chair.
Optimized work environment: Getting stylish and comfortable chairs helps brighten the office’s overall tone and keeps employees more comfortable and satisfied on the job.
Improved health: With a quality office chair that fits your body and has an ergonomic design, you can protect your hips, legs and back from strain and discomfort. Plus, you’ll save on the associated health care expenses of getting musculoskeletal issues treated in the future.
Increased efficiency: When you feel more comfortable at work, you’ll enjoy improved focus and concentration.
How to Choose the Best Office Chair
When selecting an office chair, comfort is paramount. An ergonomic chair can help keep your employees healthy and productive, so you want to ensure it works with their unique needs. A modern design can also brighten up the workspace and boost morale, so consider the aesthetic appeal in your decision.
Search for these primary factors to help you choose the best option for your office.
Adjustability: Look for features like adjustable height, armrests and other components that can help users customize to their preferred fit.
Durability: Read customer reviews and evaluate chair construction to help you find highly durable options for daily use.
Comfort: The chair’s overall comfort can depend on many things, including the dimensions, materials and design. Look for options that are ergonomic, breathable and supportive.
How to Choose the Best Reception Seating
When you’re shopping for reception chairs, you’ll probably have some different priorities than you do for office chairs. While you want comfortable seating, you also want options that fit your company’s overall aesthetic and get visitors’ attention. You can use reception and accent chairs to enhance your space and set a tone for your business.
For reception seating, look for features like these.
Style: Find a furniture style that’s consistent with your business vibe, whether you’re trying to set a sleek and modern tone or project an elegant and traditional image.
Layout: Select aesthetically pleasing, functional furniture you can conveniently assemble, leaving ample space for the reception staff to work.
Function: Purchase chairs that fit your day-to-day requirements for welcoming visitors and holding meetings. Getting sturdy, comfortable chairs is a worthwhile investment for something you’ll use regularly.
How to Choose the Best Executive Chairs
When you’re selecting an executive chair, form and function are critical. You can create the right image for your company with an elegant executive chair that enhances the space and complements the room’s aesthetic. At the same time, you’ll be using your executive chair for many hours of the day, so you need to prioritize comfort too.
You’ll want to pay attention to these features when you’re shopping for executive chairs.
Support: Ensure you get a chair that provides lumbar support and lets you maintain good posture.
Headrest: Executive chairs typically come with headrests, so make sure yours is at the proper angle to support your neck and does not add strain by pushing you forward too far.
Adjustability: You’ll want to get a chair that’s adjustable to your preferred height, and having adjustable armrests is also beneficial. Ensure you can adapt the chair to fit your body most comfortably.
Suspension: Having adequate padding and the right suspension will maximize your comfort when you use your chair, so make sure you’re happy with these features of your selected chair.
Explore Our Optimized Office Chair Selection
At Arnold’s Office Furniture, we provide an extensive office chair inventory to fit your unique work environment. Whatever you’re looking for in an office chair, our team can help you find the best option to keep you comfortable and productive throughout the workday.
We deliver and install nationwide, and our full-service sales team is ready to assist you in any way we can. For more information on our products and services, reach out to us today to request a free quote.
Rob has more than 25 years of experience in the office furniture business. He has used his extensive knowledge in his role as Senior Vice President to ensure our office furniture meets the needs of the modern corporate office environment and he regularly lends his expertise to various articles posted on the Arnold’s Office Furniture blog. Learn more about Rob!