Office Chair Buying Guide

We get asked many times throughout the week the best tips to buying an office chair so we have built this Office Chair Buying Guide to help you out. Feel free to send us any questions you think should be included that will help other readers!

How long will you be sat in your office chair each day?

If you are going to be using your office chair for an 8 hour working day, then an adjustable computer operator's chair chaircould do the job. Make sure the chair has been officially tested for at least 8 hours usage - this means that the mechanism and build quality should be fairly robust. If, however, you will be working/gaming in your chair for longer than 8 hours then you'd be better off going for a heavy duty office chair with lumbar support. These chairs are extremely adjustable, very hard wearing and nice and comfortable!

Will you be the only one using the chair?

If yes, then ensure that the chair can be adjusted in the ways you need it to be. This may include adjusting the height of the seat, or the tilt of the back. You may not need it to be adjustable at all! If others will also be using the chair the a more adjustable type chair would be best, and the heavy duty ones mentioned above are the most adjustable. You should also consider if either you or the other user needs a specific bad back office chair as these come with additional features such as inflatable lumbar support and the ability to slide the seat back and forth, not just up and down.

Should I go for fabric or leather finish?

This is really a personal choice as many office chair types are available in either a fabric or leather version. One very important thing to consider is the level of fire retardancy the chairs provide. If you are planning to use it in the home then you need to ensure that the foam that supports you has been tested to BS 7176 Medium Hazard standard as a minimum.

Are chair armrests important?

Again, this is a personal choice and it depends on where the chair will be used and also the requirements of the user. A computer chair being used in a home study will probably be in a fairly space-restricted environment so arm rests would probably not be a great fit. However, if arm rests are required as you need to ensure a good posture, then make sure you go for chairs that can have the armrests removed.

What about a headrest?

Headrests are particularly useful for people with bad backs that may need additional head and neck support. Headrests are only usually found on office chairs that have a higher level of adjustability, including a chair tilt function. 

Do I need wheels?

Some users have to sit on chairs placed on smooth wooden floors which can mean your chair move around quite easily. Unfortunately the majority of office chairs come with wheels so it might pay to place the chair on a mat that will help generate little more friction and stop it from moving around so easily.

Finally, don't forget to get up and have a wander around the office/house every couple of hours to ensure that the blood flow is healthy and you give your eyes a break from looking at a screen!


This post has been written by Paul Randall - a young, successful entrepreneur and MD of Rainbow Zebra - to find out more about him call today on 0800 092 1985.

Posted by Paul Randall
18th April 2013