Ergonomic seating in the workplace has two main objectives. The first is to increase efficiency by reducing fatigue. The second is to support proper posture. The entire esports industry uses PC gaming chairs to meet these objectives. Pros rely on gaming chair ergonomics for full-time training. This article explains why gaming chairs are also the best choice for office workers and full-time computer users.
PC gaming chairs are the best option for two reasons. First, they offer great ergonomics. Second, they are affordable.
In most offices, users must conform to the equipment provided at their workstation. In contrast, the goal of ergonomics is for the equipment to adapt to the user. Practicing good ergonomics in the workplace is a no-brainer. Doing so yields many benefits including improved productivity and increased worker satisfaction.
Ergonomic problems in modern offices
In the year 2000, J. Fernandez and M. Goodman published the defining paper on office ergonomics. In Ergonomics in the Workplace, they noted that when selecting chairs, most office designers only consider cost and appearance. Factors they should considered include:
- Ergonomics: proper fit for individual users; comfort for users — not the buyer
- Adjustability: range and ease of adjustability of the user.
- Economic factors: cost of chair; maintenance; lifespan of chair.
- Safety: tipping over, collapsing under weight, etc.
- Other factors: swivel (to reduce awkward postures); adjustable armrests; casters.
Choose chairs based only on looks and price can cripple a company’s staff.
Cheap office chairs without back support hinder worker efficiency. Staff using cheap chairs tend to suffer from poor posture, discomfort, and chronic health issues.
It’s not noticeable in an instant. But over time, the damage caused by cheap office chairs can be catastrophic.
Cumulative trauma disorders
Cumulative trauma disorders (CTDs) are physical injuries that develop over time. These are the result of repeated stresses on a specific body part. For example, if you work in an office and slouch all day at your desk, this will take a toll. CTD effects from chronic slouching start as pain or stiffness in joints or muscles.
The Norwegian State Institute did a study on causes of work absenteeism. They found the common cold the most common reason for people missing work. Muscle soreness was the second. They also found that by making workstation improvements, absenteeism halved.
At a computer workstation, there is a desk, personal computer, keyboard, mouse and chair. The quality of the computer will have the biggest impact on productivity. A slow, outdated machine will decrease output. The quality of the chair has the second-biggest impact. Cheap office chairs aren’t built with ergonomics in mind. They offer minimal support for the back, neck, shoulders, and arms while sitting.
The pro esports training model
Astralis is a pro CS:GO team based in Denmark. They were one of the first teams to place a priority on performance optimization. Their Astralis Performance Model focuses on player wellness away from the computer.
Astralis player Nicolai ‘dev1ce’ Reedtz describes it as a simple process. He puts team success down to “Eating well, sleeping well, going to the gym….”
While office workers often face pressures, it doesn’t compare to the pressure CS:GO pros face. Counterstrike is an international esport that runs year-round. Many other top esports games like League of Legends and Fornite are also taxing. In fact, across the esports industry, player burnout and exhaustion are common. That’s why the chairs that pros use are so relevant to office workers.
Many office workers also sit full-time while under pressure to produce. If you work at a computer under constant stress, try out the esports model. First, when away from the computer, get the right amounts of sleep, exercise, and nutrition. Then, when at the computer, ensure optimal ergonomics. The key to that at your computer workstation is your choice of chair.
Ergonomic chair options for the office
In the modern workplace, there are three legitimate seating options. These are office chairs, ergonomic task chairs and PC gaming chairs.
Office chairs are the worst ergonomic option. Our office chair vs. gaming chair comparison explains why. In brief, office chairs don’t support your back while sitting. That places strain on your back and upper body muscles. As your back tires, the spine will begin to wilt into a slouch.
Slouching is habit-forming. Once you get used to sitting that way, all sorts of health issues can arise. In the end, slouching office workers become sickly, lethargic and depressed.
So office chairs are the worst option for full-time computer users. Below is a look at the two best options for people who sit full-time.
Ergonomic task chairs
Ergonomic task chairs are the Lamborghinis of the seating industry. Top models from industry leaders like Herman Miller cost over $1000.
At that price point, you get impressive features. For example, here are the specs for Herman Miller’s flagship Aeron chair:
- Height adjustment: raise until your feet lie flat on the floor.
- Tilt limiter: increase or decrease the range that the chair tilts.
- Tilt tension: adjust the seat rockback tension when you push off the ground with your feet.
- 3D armrests: adjust up, down and side-to-side.
- Posture-fit lumbar: adjustable lumbar. Increase or decrease depth to small of the back; adjust up and down.
- Forward tilt: set the chair to tilt forward while keyboarding. This prevents computer users from hunching over.
The Aeron currently sells on Amazon for Price not available. To justify the steep price, it also comes with a 12-year back warranty and super-precise back support. In the office seating industry, no other chairs can match the precision of these chairs.
PC gaming chairs
If task chairs are the Lamborghinis of the seating industry, PC gaming chairs are Tesla Roadsters. PC gaming chairs lack the super-precise micro-support that $1000 task chairs offer. Otherwise, they match the features of the best ergonomic task chairs, for much less money.
At the cost of the Herman Miller Embody, you could buy two top-rated PC chairs (Secretlab Titan and Omega) and still have $800 left over.
So what is a gaming chair? DXRacer released the world’s first PC gaming chair in 2006. That groundbreaking model became the blueprint for all chairs to follow. Like task chairs, gaming chairs focus on providing ergonomic support while sitting. That means the chair adjusts to the user while they sit at a computer. In doing so, it helps the user maintain optimal posture.
That is how PC gaming chairs provide complete support for computer users. Below are quick tips to optimize ergonomics from our gaming chair user guide.
First, adjust the chair’s height to match your desk. Then, adjust the armrests to support your arms and wrists. Set the recline to around 100°. Finally, rest your body against the backrest with your feet planted on the floor. This puts you in the perfect position for high-performance computing.
Gaming chair features are simple but very well thought out. Adjustable pillows at the lower back and neck support the spine’s natural curves. The neck pillow absorbs the weight of your head and aligns your eyes with the computer screen. The armrests absorb the weight of your arms, placing them within easy reach of the mouse and keyboard.
Why PC gaming chairs are the best option
They’re called “gaming chairs”. They are also called “PC gaming chairs.” Whatever term you use, gaming chairs are the gold standard for modern office workers. First, because they provide the ergonomic support that full-time computer users need. Second, because they are affordable for all levels of computer users.
Those with doubts can look to the billion-dollar esports industry. All the top teams use PC gaming chairs for full-time training.
Office workers, executives, and full-time computer operators have a choice. Some choose to blend in, go unnoticed and coast through their days. Others are hungry, driven to succeed and always looking for an edge.
How would it help your career if you could perform at your computer like an esports superstar? Investing in a good quality gaming chair will give you the means to do it.
Best PC gaming chairs for office workers
The best gaming chairs for office workers are the ones most used by esports pros. These models cost between $350 to $500. In 2020, Secretlab is the industry leader. Several of the world’s top esports teams use their chairs for full-time training. Secretlab chairs also grace the stage at the world’s top esports tournaments.
Office workers who can’t afford high-end can get cheap chairs for less than $200. The best cheap PC chairs provide basic ergonomic support with less durability than top models. Expect padding on cheap models to flatten within six months if you use them full time. Even so, cheap PC chairs still provide a huge upgrade over office chairs.
Among our top-rated pro esports chairs, a pair of Secretlab gaming chairs are the industry leaders. The Secretlab Titan is roomier, with an internal lumbar. Turn the knob to increase or decrease support into the curve of your lower back. That unique feature gives back support comparable to the most expensive task chairs.
The Omega is a compact alternative. It uses a traditional gaming chair lumbar pillow. Otherwise, it has the same features as the Titan, with smaller dimensions.
Compare the best wide and compact models in our 2020 review:
Large pro esports chairs
Large pro gaming chairs have flat, wide seats and support bigger bodies. Large models tend to be more comfortable since they offer more legroom. On the downside, it’s easier (and more tempting) to slouch when you have a roomy seat.
The Secretlab Titan is our top-rated large model. The Titan has features comparable to pricey task chairs. Unlike most gaming chairs, the Titan has a task-chair style internal lumbar system. It also boasts high-end ergonomic features like 4D armrests, seat angle tilt lock and recline from 85° to 165°.
Other top wide models come from Maxnomic, AKRacing, Vertagear, Noblechairs and DXRacer. Compare all models in our updated 2020 review:
Compact pro esports chairs
Compact gaming chairs have winged edges that keep your legs narrow. These models are best for slim people of average size who prefer ergonomics over comfort. The narrower fit locks your body into an almost perfect position for computing.
It’s a little unsettling at first. With your body aligned while sitting, it feels like floating. The chair positions your head to the screen and your arms to the mouse. Once locked in position, distractions fade. You’ll forget that your sitting and have 100% focus on your computer screen.
Our top-rated compact model is the Secretlab Omega. It has the same features as the Titan minus the internal lumbar — the Omega uses a traditional model.
Other top-rated compact models come from Maxnomic, DXRacer, and Noblechairs. Compare the best compact gaming chairs in our 2020 guide:
Many professionals do complex work while sitting for long periods at a computer. Digital marketers process spreadsheets all day. Writers churn out thousands of words under tight deadlines. Programmers sit most of their days away solving complex math problems.
These jobs are all mentally taxing. If the body wears down, work performance will degrade. Employees who slouch at their workstations are a sign of trouble. Whether it’s broken confidence or struggles with posture, it needs attention. Otherwise, productivity will spiral until they no longer provide value.
The first thing needed to reverse a lethargic work life is a good ergonomic chair. PC gaming chairs are the most effective solution, offering the best value for money. These chairs are good for your back. They make a difference with advanced ergonomics and thick, luxurious padding. Gaming chairs are comfortable, affordable and effective.
What’s more, using one will help you to develop — and maintain — good posture. With good posture comes many benefits. These include more energy, boosted confidence and greater output at work.
The second thing needed is the same healthy lifestyle approach that pro gamers use. When away from the computer, make sure to get adequate rest, exercise and nutrition.
Combined, these two tactics will supercharge your wellness. The gaming chair is key.
Are you looking for a performance edge over your peers? A PC gaming chair will let you sit longer, work smarter and be more productive.