The Best Ergonomic Office Chair

SwingChair is the best ergonomic office chair for back pain

Per the Human Factors & Ergonomics Society, “Ergonomics (or human factors) is the scientific discipline concerned with the understanding of interactions among humans and other elements of a system, and the profession that applies theory, principles, data and methods to design in order to optimize human well-being and overall system performance.”

The Rise of Ergonomic Design

HF&E is employed to fulfill the goals of health and safety and productivity. It is relevant in the design of such things as safe furniture and easy-to-use interfaces to machines and equipment. Proper ergonomic design is necessary to prevent repetitive strain injuries and other musculoskeletal disorders, which can develop over time and can lead to long-term disability.

Human factors and ergonomics is concerned with the “fit” between the user, equipment and their environments. It takes account of the user’s capabilities and limitations in seeking to ensure that tasks, functions, information and the environment suit each user.

To assess the fit between a person and the used technology, human factors specialists or ergonomists consider the job (activity) being done and the demands on the user; the equipment used (its size, shape, and how appropriate it is for the task), and the information used (how it is presented, accessed, and changed). Ergonomics draws on many disciplines in its study of humans and their environments, including anthropometry, biomechanics, mechanical engineering, industrial engineering, industrial design, information design, kinesiology, physiology, and psychology.

SwingChair Ergonomic Chair for Back Pain

Ergomomics Fits Human Beings to their Environment

There is archeological evidence showing that the ancient Greeks practiced ergonomics in many ways, describing for example the tools that a surgeon should use for various operations, and the design and layout of the actual surgery itself. Modern ergonomics as a distinct discipline took off during World War II when engineers tried to understand why highly trained pilots crashed planes that were in perfect working order. They discovered that the layout of the instrument panel could be confusing and lead to pilot error. Thus began the first organized effort to create tools that fit a human being to their job for maximum efficiency and minimum risk of personal injury or failure to accomplish the task.

Ergonomics in the Office Environment

When ergonomists became involved in the office, they soon noticed that people were spending more and more time in their chairs because the computer made it possible to create, store and distribute documents without having to leave their seat. And thus began a concerted design effort that in the end resulted in ergonomic chairs with a dizzying array of adjustments all meant to support what was deemed to be a “neutral posture.” Chairs went from having one adjustment, seat height, to having a dozen adjustments all meant to lock you into one posture that was thought to be “safe.”

However, despite ergonomic chairs which could be adjusted by a trained professional to get you into a neutral posture, the problems continued and got worse. With the advent of the internet and real-time connectivity across the entire globe (think Google, Skype et al), people could spend many hours at one time seated in the office in front of their computer, barely stopping to eat.

SwingChair Ergonomic Office Chair

Unlocking the Locked Spine

Today, ergonomists and health care providers understand that the pattern of fatigue, pain and long-term injury that continues to plague office and computer workers simply cannot be fixed by locking the spine into a so-called neutral posture. Through the use of modern research tools such as the positional MRI, the constant loading of the spine, hips and legs caused by a fixed posture is now confirmed as the primary cause of these injuries. But the solution did not come into view until a new branch of medicine entered the picture: Kinesiology. Read more about this on the The ErgoMotion Science Page.