About ergonomics and sitting

Ergonomics is about adapting the workspace and the work to the individual who’s utilising the workspace. Ergonomics is the interdisciplinary term. The goal when designing a good work environment is to customize the workspace so that the individual is able to work under optimal conditions. The main purpose is to create the best possible conditions for each individual to work. If that’s successful the workspace will not only facilitate the work itself but also contribute to efficiency and productivity.

The importance of a whole

Things like the design of the workspace, light and sound environment, technological equipment, the organisation as well as work duties affect good sitting.

Good visual ergonomics, that is how the work and workspace is adapted for you to see good, is the basis for you to be able to work well and prohibit glare. By utilizing this you can avoid sitting errors in a good office chair, something you might do to compensate for bad visual ergonomics, to sit askew or working with hunched shoulders for example. A good office chair will therefore not come to its own in a flawed work environment.

To choose the right chair

When a workspace is being planned the most prominent thing is the physical design. You should choose an office chair with high comfort for example.

The chair’s set-up should be easy and simple and it should be just as simple to make minor adjustments while seated in the chair if needed. Controls and other functions should be easy to understand and to use. The chair should offer you what feels good while seated and at the same time be flexible and stimulate you to variation in your sitting.

While seated this way the body won’t be completely still, you will need to make small movements and changing your posture often. The chair must facilitate these movements. This is what is called physical variation or active sitting.

To create work and a workspace where you vary between a seated and standing position is also part of an active sitting. Because of this the chair also needs to be easy to get in and out of.

An ergonomically well-developed office chair is:

  • Easy to set up and to adjust in order to offer a variety of possibilities when you’re seated. The controls are easy to understand and to use. Seat, backrest, armrests and the, sometimes optional, neck rest are easy to adjust to the individual’s body measurements.
  • Flexible while seated.
  • Easy to use with a desk and fits in well in the workspace.

Good ergonomics in an office chair thus means:

  • Good seating comfort and possibilities to adjust to different individual needs.
  • Settings that are easy to understand and to use.
  • Stimulating active and varied sitting