Best Ergonomic Office Chair

Looking for the best ergonomic office chair?  You’ve come to the right place.  We’ve poured over the data and evaluated these chairs based on price, functionality, quality of materials and value to come up with our top 3 ergonomic chair recommendations for 2018.

Of course,  if you’re the sort of person that just wants the tl;dr; you can click here to see our #1 pick on Amazon.com.  But, most likely you want the details, so without further adieu:

Top 3 Best Ergongomic Chairs 2018:

2018 Update: As it turns out, our top 3 list is largely unchanged for 2018.  The king of office chairs, the Herman Miller Aeron, still tops our list.  In my opinion, it is just the perfect chair, which is why I have one in my office.  Amazon continues to take over the world, particularly in the value segment.  The AmazonBasics line continues to offer superior value and performance.  There was a shakeup in the number 3 position, however.  LCH, a relative newcomer, has absolutely exploded on the market with its lineup of mid-level office furniture. The LCH High Back Mesh Office Chair is definitely the best office chairs I have come across in recent memory.  It is affordably priced, and offers a superior build quality that has not been found on a mid-range chair in quite some time.

Check our our 3 best ergonomic chairs for 2017 here.

Consider These Key Factors While Evaluating an Ergonomic Office Chair:

Build Quality

Everyone wants a chair that will last the test of time.  Chairs can be a major investment, which is why you want to make sure that you are purchasing a chair that is made from the point of view of a craftsman, rather than that of a manufacturer that just wants to get chairs out the door.  You do not want a chair that will need to be replaced in the first few months of use.  You don’t need to break the bank, however, in order to find a chair that will last.  In fact, some of the best chairs on the market can be had for just a couple hundred dollars or less.  Here, what you want to look for is a chair that is well designed and reliable.  You want a Honda Accord, not a Lamborghini Aventador.

Specifically, we suggest that you look closely at:

  • Fit – Is the chair built with close tolerances?  Is it well put together?
  • Strength – How strong are the components themselves?  Will they break when put to the test?
Material Quality

As with build quality, material quality is of the upmost importance if you want a chair that will last.  Will the chair stand up to dings and dents that inevitably come with long hours at the office?  Will the connectors that hold the chair together remain tight for years to come or will they degrade with use?  Are the soft materials such as cloth and leather of the highest quality or are they subcontracted out to the lowest bidder?

The key thing to avoid is cheap, flimsy plastic components.  Luckily, all the chairs on our list are built from either high quality plastic or, in some cases, metal such as aluminum or steel.  Look closely at the build materials used in order to protect your investment.

Adjustability

No chair will fit every person on the planet because no two people are have exactly the same fit preferences.  However, most modern chairs involve a level of adjustability in order to allow chairs to tailor themselves to your personal needs.  The more adjustable a chair is, the more likely it is that you will be able to find a position taht matches your preferred sitting posture. 

Here are some of the most common adjustments available:

  • Height – This is perhaps the most important.  Controls the height of the seat cushion to accommodate longer or shorter legs.
  • Seat Back – Adjusts the height of the seat back to accommodate taller or shorter torsos.
  • Lumbar support position – Adjusts the position of the primary lumbar support.  This is important if you really need precise lumbar support or if you are taller or shorter than a “typical” individual.
  • Tilt lock – Sets the maximum or fixed recline tilt of the chair.  Some degree of recline is often beneficial in order to take vertical strain off of the spine.  I typically only purchase office chairs that include a tilt lock setting.
  • Tilt adjust – Many chairs that do not include a tilt lock setting do include a tilt adjust setting.  Typically this setting controls the spring tension of the chair recline. When dialed all the way up, it is nearly impossible to recline the chair, whereas when dialed down the chair will recline easily.  In general, I have found it very difficult to achieve the desired level of recline with a tilt adjust setting.
  • Swivel – Many office chairs allow the chair to be swiveled left and right.
  • Arm Rests – Adjustable arm rests allow you to position the height of the arm wrests so as to minimize interference with proper mousing technique, while also allowing you to rest your arms when necessary.
Contoured Design

The overall ergonomics of your desk will be influenced not only by your resting position, but also the ease with which you can perform your primary tasks.  In the case of an office chair used for computing, for example, it may be important to use a chair with convex arm wrests so as to promote freedom of motion in the wrist and forearm. 

Every chair has its own contours which will in turn promote or restrict certain movement patterns.  Take into account these aspects of a chair’s design in order to find one that will push you towards the healthy ergonomic patterns that you desire.

Our Favorite Ergonomic Chairs :

Aeron Ergonomic Chair by Herman Miller

(Full Review)

Pros:

  • Durability – My Aeron has lasted my 6+ years.  It is built like a tank.
  • Back Support – Fully adjustable (on high end models), pretty much sets the bar for other ergonomic chairs.
  • Rounded Seat Cushion – Fits contours like a glove.  Comfortable, but firm so as to promote good posture.
  • Variety of Sizes – A, B and C sizes are available for virtually any body size.

Cons:

  • Price – Kind of expensive, but you get what you pay for.

AmazonBasics High-Back Executive Chair

(full review)

Pros:
  • Ample Lumbar Support – As executive chairs go, the High-Back Executive Chair provides as much or more lumbar support than nearly any other chair on the market.
  • Plush Seat Cushion – Soft seat cushion and durable material.
  • Tilt Adjustment – While not as fully-featured as many ergonomic-first chairs, for an executive chair, the tilt feature is a nice addition.
  • Price – At less than $150, the High-Back Executive Chair is a steal.

Cons:

    • Lack of Lumbar Support Adjustability – A nice-to-have feature found on high end ergonomic-first chairs that is sadly missing from this executive chair..
    • Fixed Arm Rests – Not ideal if you’re trying to save your wrists with proper mousing technique.
    • Leather Seat Material – Not particularly breathable compared to something like a mesh back.

LCH High Back Mesh Office Chair

(Full Review)

Pros:

  • Build Quality – With a steel base and high quality components, the LCH Mesh Chair is best of breed when it comes to mid-range chairs.
  • Mesh Back Support – Ample support and a high quality mesh material.
  • Price – Reasonably priced for a mid-range chair.  Competitive with the best value chairs on the market.

Cons:

  • No Tilt Lock – The lack of tilt lock means that it can be difficult to dial in exactly the back angle you prefer.  It does feature a tilt tensioner adjust, but I prefer to not have the pressure of a tensioner when reclining.
  • Fixed Arm Wrests – I dislike fixed arm wrests because they can prevent proper mousing technique.  Additionally, fixed arm wrests might not fit all heights.
  • Aggressive Lumbar Support – Some have complained that the lumbar support on the LCH is too aggressive.