Cheap gaming chairs let you rock the seat or lock the rocking function. Pricer pro gaming chairs have a feature called a “multifunction tilt-lock”. Also called “seat angle tilt-lock”, this lets you adjust and lock a gaming chair’s seat at different angles.
What’s the point of a seat angle tilt lock? Is it worth paying a premium for? What do you lose by not having one? Check out this short video explanation:
Multifuction tilt-lock FAQ
Below we answer common questions answered about the multifunction tilt-lock feature.
What is a multifuction tilt-lock?
A multifunction tilt lock is an ergonomic feature found on pro-quality gaming chairs.
Cheap gaming chairs have a single lever under the seat. That controls the height of the chair and comes with a lock. Engaged, the lock keeps the seat fixed in place. When released, the seat can rock backward to around 120°.
Chairs with a multifunction tilt lock have two levers under the seat. One controls the height of the chair. The other lets you rock the chair and also lock the seat at different angles.
Used as is, a seat angle tilt lock is a handy way quickly recharge while sitting. Used with addons, a multifunction tilt mechanism can add new ergonomic dimensions to your chair.
How does tilt-lock help?
The point of a gaming chair’s seat angle tilt-lock is to help you relax between computing sessions. Tilting the seat up sinks your hips to a deeper angle while raising your thighs higher. That reduces the lumbar spine’s curve. Sitting this way helps over short periods. Then, it engages leg muscles, stretches the hips, and improves circulation.
The circulation boost is the key. Healthy veins have valves that open when muscles move and close when they are still. Each muscle contraction squeezes blood with greater force back to the heart.
For best results, use this feature wisely. Over short periods, angling the seat stretchs back muscles while boosting circulation. Over longer periods, sitting this way increases the risk of developing kyphosis.
Sitting at a normal recline with the seat angled raises the thighs, dangling the legs over the seat. Over short periods, it’s a good way to work leg muscles while stretching the back.
Over longer periods, sitting this way stresses the lower back and becomes painful. A simple way to relieve that tension is to add support to raise your legs.
The same idea applies when using seat tilt with a deep recline. As is, it provides a good stretch, but only for a few minutes at a time.
The equation changes when you add a footrest. Then, you get the benefits of various back angles, without placing stress on the lower spine.
DIY ergonomic recliner
Most popular gaming chairs with footrests cost less than $200. Those are consumer-class chairs with basic features and a lower quality of padding.
In contrast, pro gaming chairs come with high-end ergonomic features. Those include seat angle tilt-lock, 4D armrests, premium padding and more.
Do you want the casual lounging ability of a footrest gaming chair plus the serious support of a pro chair? Two addons will help.
Ergonomic foot rest
The easiest way to support your feet while angling the seat is to add a foot rest. That prevents dangling legs from stressing the spine.
A gaming chair foot rest also adds other benefits when tilt-lock is off. For instance, the Mind Reader Foot Rest has three tilt angles. Sit down in your chair and place your feet on the footrest. If you engage seat tilt, the pebbled footrest will massage your feet while holding them at an angle. To change angles, push with your toes to angle down. Push with your heels to angle up.
There are only a handful of gaming chair footstools on the market. The AKRacing footstool is one of the most popular. It has an adjustable height setting, plus a lockable setting to ensure it stays in place.
Adding a footstool will turn your pro gaming chair into a powerful recliner. No matter what position you angle the seat to, the footstool will support your legs. Then, shifting through seat angles can boost circulation and work your back while you sit.
Gaming chairs with a multifunction tilt mechanism cost more than gaming chairs without one. On its own, a seat angle tilt-lock can work your lower body and stretch your back over short periods.
Those wanting more can build on tilt-lock functionality with accessories. A foot rest will support your feet and let you work your heels and ankles as you sit. A footstool will turn your gaming chair into an ergonomic recliner that’s good for your back. The chair aligns your posture, while the footstool supports your legs. Then you can spend hours reading, watching movies, or napping. Any time you want to refresh, angle the seat or the backrest by a few degrees. That will work leg muscles, stretch your back and boost circulation while you recline.
In conclusion, a multifunction tilt lock is a nice feature to have, but not a necessary one. You could also refresh your body by taking a walking break every half hour.
The main appeal is that chairs with tilt-lock tend to have a full suite of pro features. For a premium price, you get full adjustability, superb padding and luxurious comfort.
Learn more about the differences between cheap and expensive gaming chairs: