Having the right chair supporting you can help your spine stay healthy and keep you comfortable. We take a look at some useful gaming chair ergonomics.
Did you know that there are more than 2 billion gamers worldwide? This number is expected to increase to 3 billion by 2023. If you spend much of your time at your desk gaming, then you'll need gaming chair ergonomics on your side.
If your gaming chair design isn't supporting your body posture, you will soon find yourself suffering from all sorts of back and neck pain. This, of course, is not what you want when you're trying to enjoy your next gaming session. So, what should you look for when choosing the best chair for gaming?
Keep reading and learn all about choosing the right gaming chair for you and your spine health.
Choose a Chair That Supports Your Lumbar Spine
As mentioned before, reducing back pain plays a big part when choosing an ergonomic chair. A cheap office chair from your local high street retailer isn't going to cut it. Such a chair is designed to only support your body for short periods of time.
You'll need to go above and beyond your typical office chair when it comes to long gaming sessions that can last for hours upon hours. When you're in the middle of a gaming session, you don't want your progress or quality to be compromised by a sore back. Most gamers have problems with their lumbar spine.
The lumbar spine is the lower part of your spine that meets your sacrum. This part of the spine naturally curves inwards compared to the rest of the spine. If the lumbar spine doesn't get enough support, it's going to start aching.
Even if you seem to have a comfortable chair, that chair may not be doing much for your lower back and as a result, you'll suffer from lower back pain later on. For example, if the back of your current chair is more or less straight up and down, it isn't going to give you the lumbar support that you need.
Instead, you should look for a chair that has a back that curves toward your lumbar spine. That way, when sitting in your chair, your lumbar spine will align perfectly with the shape of the chair's back.
This will make the chair much more comfortable and you'll be able to sit up for a much longer period of time.
This is important because if you aren't comfortable sitting up, you might start to slouch or ball up in your chair. These positions can affect not only your spinal health but also your gaming performance. Once you start using a chair that has lumbar support, you'll immediately notice a difference.
Whatever lower back pain you currently have will quickly disappear once you get used to your new chair. Of course, the chair's lumbar support will only work if you sit in the chair using proper posture. If you slouch or don't lean back against the chair, the chair isn't going to help you much.
The lumbar support of a gaming chair may vary according to the quality of the chair. For example, some more affordable chairs may only have a small pillow in the area of your lumbar spine. While this can improve your spinal health somewhat, it won't provide all that much support.
On the other hand, some higher-end gaming chairs usually have firmer materials that cradle your lower back. That way, your back will be supported as much as it possibly can be. The choice, of course, also depends on your own personal preference.
Choose the Right Chair Material
Chairs come in all sorts of materials. However, when shopping for ordinary gaming chairs (and even luxury gaming chairs) you will find two main material options: fabric and PU leather.
Both of these materials are quite popular and both make for good choices for gaming chairs. The choice will come down to your personal preference and which material you like better based on the appearance and feel.
PU leather looks a lot like real leather but it is actually completely artificial (although, some types of PU leather contain some scraps of leftover cowhide).
While it is true that you can get a gaming chair made out of real leather, most gamers prefer to avoid this choice. This is because real leather is very expensive . This is not to mention that real leather needs a lot of maintenance including conditioning, polishing, and so on. Otherwise, the leather will end up cracking and all the money you spent on it will have been wasted.
You can save yourself the trouble by opting for PU leather in the first place. PU leather needs next to no maintenance and you don't need to worry about it drying out or cracking.
It is made out of polyurethane and actually looks very similar to leather. The main difference between real leather and PU leather is the texture. PU leather tends to have a softer feel and it also is not as thick as real leather.
PU leather is quite durable and there are very few downsides to it. It is water resistant, durable, and will likely last you many years.
Fabric is another great material for gaming chairs. It is much softer compared to PU leather and many people find that it offers a much cosier feel. Many people love fabric chairs because they are more breathable than PU leather as well.
You won't have to deal with your legs sticking to the fabric as they might against leather. The main problem is that the fabric is not resistant to water. So, if you end up spilling your bottle of water or a can of your favourite energy drink, it's going to be quite hard to get that liquid out of your chair.
You'll have to balance the pros and cons when it comes to choosing between fabric and PU leather. Again, they are both good choices but it all comes down to your personal preferences.
Armrests and Neck Support
Many people don't realise how important armrests are for gaming chairs. If you game without armrests, you might find that your shoulders are always tense and that your arms are always overextended. When you situate your body in this way, you will inevitably end up with a sore neck and shoulders.
You might even end up hurting your wrists doing this as well. Without having the right support for your arms, your whole gaming setup can end up twisted. For that reason, you should always look for a gaming chair with high-quality armrests.
Tiny, decorative armrests aren't going to cut it. You will want to find a chair with armrests that can support your entire forearms and ensure that your elbows are comfortable. A chair that supports your arms in this way will ensure that you don't end up straining your shoulders or arms.
Your arms also won't get tired halfway through an important gaming session. With the right support, you'll have no problem gaming for hours. The more adjustable the armrests the better. If the armrests don't feel comfortable at first, you can adjust them until they give your arms the perfect level of support.
Most PC gaming chairs already come with nice armrests, but some console chairs don't have them. If this is the case, you might have to do a bit of extra research to find a console chair with armrests.
While looking for your perfect gaming chair, keep in mind that good neck support is very important as well. If your chair doesn't support your neck, you might end up slouching or craning your neck forward while gaming. This will end up straining your neck and you'll have to deal with neck pain and headaches.
Body pain is the last thing you need to be thinking about when gaming. You also don't want to think about how tired your neck is when you're halfway through a gaming session. Fortunately, it isn't too hard to find a gaming chair with good neck support.
Many come with a small pillow attached to the top of the chair. This will cradle your head against the chair and ensure that your neck is completely supported and that your head doesn't move around too much. Others may come with less cushioning, but they may still be constructed in a way that provides support for your head.
There are many chairs that come with varying levels of support. At the end of the day, the choice of how much support you want will be up to you. Some people like to have complete neck support while others prefer only minimal support.
Check the Customer Reviews
In this day and age, customer reviews are very important when buying a gaming chair for multiple reasons. First, these customers have already bought the chair and know exactly what's good or bad about it. They can provide a unique insight into the product quality and the customer support that goes with the purchase.
Online descriptions of a chair will only tell you so much however, and the information may not be entirely accurate. You will want to closely look for both positive and negative reviews for the gaming chair that you have in mind. If a gaming chair has a ton of negative reviews, it makes sense that you shouldn't waste your money buying it even if it's the most stylish chair you've ever seen.
On the other hand, a chair with mostly positive reviews is certainly worth a closer look. The details are very important when it comes to customer reviews. For example, one review might complain about the armrests on a chair while another might praise the chair's support.
What You Need to Know
One review might complain about the price while another might say that the price of the chair is totally worth it. Of course, it is always important to take these customer reviews with a pinch of salt. Some customers might complain about factors that don't matter to you.
The main thing to look out for is consistently negative reviews concerning the quality of the chair. For example, if you see many reviews saying that the chair's fabric started to tear soon after using it, this is obviously a problem with the chair and not a subjective opinion. Comparing customer reviews with different chair models is also a good idea.
That way, you can see which chair models people like and which ones people don't like. Reading these reviews will save you a lot of time, energy, and money. They can give you the first impression of a chair before you even buy it.
With enough research, you shouldn't encounter any problems once it's finally time to place an order for your new gaming chair.
Everything You Need to Know About Gaming Chair Ergonomics
If you spend many hours gaming, then you'll need to seriously consider gaming chair ergonomics. If you're not getting the right support from your gaming chair, your gaming sessions will soon be compromised by back and neck pain along with other problems. Fortunately, you can keep these problems at bay by buying the right gaming chair.
You should opt for a chair that has great lumbar support, great materials, and great customer reviews. That way, you'll know you'll have a great gaming chair on your hands. To learn more, check out the different gaming chairs that we have to offer.