Most likely you are reading this post from the comfort of your ergonomic office chair. If so, you can thank Charles Darwin for that. Charles got the ball rolling…literally…when he added casters to the chair in his study to allow him to freely move from his desk to his specimens without getting up. By the mid-19th century the need for casters was growing and the idea of the office chair really took off. Originally, office chairs were fixed height and not mobile, but as businesses began to move away from the traditional family owned model, functional office chairs were needed for the growing number of administrative workers now spending their time moving from typewriters to dictation machines to telephones and filing systems. The need for mobility as well as comfort became imperative. As workers began spending eight hours a day in their chairs, manufacturers realized that their older designs would no longer work. They began adding features like 360 degree swivel, pneumatic lifts, lumbar support, and backs and seats that adjust, tilt and lock.
The office chair has become highly evolved over the last 150 years. Chairs like the #19 from Allsteel are designed to move naturally with the user. The #19 incorporates the most advanced ergonomic information and technology to date. Its Tria Seat Technology uses a gel combination to distribute pressure and improve air circulation so that you can work comfortably for extended periods of time. Its VenTech back material regulates temperature while its Plexus lumbar system provides lower back support and decreases tension. This chair is about more than looks, it is designed to improve the way you live and work.
The office chair of the 21st century doesn’t have to conform to the typical idea of a swivel chair on casters. Safco’s Zenergy Ball Chair is a design that thinks out of the box. It uses an anti-burst exercise ball with a stationary base so that you can sit comfortably with good posture. The bouncy movement of the chair keeps your body actively engaged throughout the day and can strengthen core muscles as well as keep your mind alert.
We have come a long way in the last 150 years and it will be interesting to see how office chair design evolves into the future.