I was asked this question a few days ago and it spurred a great conversation. I frequently get asked questions like this or hear statements such as:
- Only an insane person would spend $1000 on a chair, or
- I want a great chair for my bad back for $200.
I usually respond with “how much did you spend on your mattress?”
That question starts the thinking wheels turning. Then I say “and if you’re lucky you spend 8 hours a night on your mattress right?”
The truth is that sitting is much harder on your body than lying down is, and many of us spend more hours in our office chair than in our bed. Once this information is understood, the value of a good office chair is easier to grasp. If your back hurts, it will impact the quality and quantity of work you get done. Thus a good ergonomic chair is an important investment.
It’s easy to spend upwards of $1500 on a good ergonomic chair, but that’s absolutely not necessary. If you sit for more than 6 hours a day, you should probably budget at least $500. Less if you’re up and down all day. More if you’re very tall, over 250 lbs, have specific pain problems already, or are picky about styling. In addition to better comfort and more personalization to ensure a great fit, a better quality chair will last longer and most are highly modular so you can adapt the chair to changing needs or style requirements without having to buy another chair.
A great chair is a true investment. It’s an investment in your comfort, your long term health, and will deliver a better return on investment than a cheap one can.
The gentlemen who spurred this conversation this week responded with “I was about to spend $300 on a phone so it feels foolish to find $1000 for a chair ridiculous.” He had a point.