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Task chair

Ergonomic standards and guidelines recommend varying your posture throughout the work day – sitting while reclining, upright, or in forward tilt; standing or alternating between sitting and standing – recognizing that not one posture should be used for an extended period. An adequate task chair will allow users to vary their posture by providing adjustable features to enhance the comfort, productivity, and overall well-being of the employee. 

The research is mixed on the benefits of standing versus sitting. Both positions are beneficial for a period of time with breaks needed from both for the best experience. Standing alleviates lower back pain since the spine is in its optimal position. Standing also allows for more flexibility to move around and to hold heavy loads. However, sitting is easier on the joints than standing, and does not lead to fatigue as quickly as standing. Sitting can cause low back pain due to increased pressure on the disks in the back - especially if the chair does not provide sufficient support or positioning. Shoulder and neck discomfort can also be greater while seated due to increased stress. Research shows that both standing and sitting can result in swelling of the legs and feet from reduced circulation, as well as discomfort in the lower body and varicose veins. Because of these aspects, alternating between standing and sitting is essential for the comfort and productivity of the worker.


Chair should allow for three working postures (reclining, upright, and forward tilt).


The task chair should be adjustable for the employee by height and lumbar support.


Workspace design should allow for alternating between sitting and standing.

Read more

If you want to learn more, we suggest the following resources:

Lehman, K.R., Psihogios, J.P., Meulenbroek, R.G.J., Effects of sitting versus standing and scanner type on cashiers, 719-738; Ergonomics 44/7, June 2001.

ANSI/HFES 100 Workstation standards.

Joy M. Ebben. Improved Ergonomics for Standing Work. April 1, 2003. 

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