The office is somewhere you’re likely to spend a large amount of time – office workers in the UK spend approximately 75% of their waking hours sitting. This means you’ll want your employees to be as comfortable as possible, as office chairs are crucial in shaping a productive work environment. When it comes to selecting office chairs, choosing between static and swivel options can be difficult. Read on to find out the advantages and limitations of both types of chair, as well as discovering more about the abundance of office furniture options available on the market.
What is a static office chair?
To put it simply, a static office chair has no wheels. While wheeled office chairs have been dominating the market, there are significant benefits to having an office chair with no wheels:
What are the benefits of static office chairs?
- An office chair with fixed legs can be just as comfortable as an office chair with wheels.
- Office chairs without wheels are usually less expensive than wheeled office chairs.
- Static office chairs are a better option for meeting rooms, reception areas, and employee breakout areas.
- They come with floor guards and work well even with hard floors.
- Office chairs without wheels have a simple design and are easier to assemble.
- They are clearly the better choice for offices with wooden floors or if the desk and chair are placed on a platform or riser.
- They look better in home offices.
- It is possible to find an ergonomic chair without wheels.
What are the limitations of static chairs?
- When you choose an office chair with four static legs, you won’t have the ease of movement that comes with a wheeled chair.
- There are fewer varieties of static office chairs to choose from.
- Most static office chairs don’t feature armrests or adjustable support.
What is a swivel office chair?
A swivel office chair is a chair with wheels. Swivel office chairs have a colourful history. The office chair without wheels dates back to the early 1840s when Charles Darwin famously added wheels to his chair so he could move around his study more easily and get to his specimens quickly – desk chairs with wheels have been popular ever since.
What are the benefits of swivel office chairs?
- Wheels give office chairs a firm foundation and provide better balance whilst working.
- Office chairs with wheels are more mobile and allow employees to move around easily. What this means is that when someone gets up from their desk their chair will not scrape across the floor. Having wheels on your office chairs will save you from the agonising sound of those chairs being dragged across the floor. Not only will it protect your ears, it will also save you some cash in not having to replace worn areas of flooring.
- No matter how cheap, swivel office chairs have some degree of adjustability, whether it is automatically adjustable, or you have to get on your hands and knees to adjust the height, having that small amount of adjustability means that you will be able to set the chair up to suit your needs. Workers can reach documents and office equipment without having to get up or stretch.
- Most ergonomic office chairs feature wheels because they offer more support and can be adjusted to suit the specific user. Even on the most affordable of office chairs you will be able to adjust the backrest at least a couple of inches. This small amount of movement is all it takes to make sure that your lower back (lumbar as it is sometimes known) is properly supported.
What are the limitations of swivel chairs?
- Wheeled office chairs are not suitable for all work environments, for example, in meeting rooms where people are expected to sit still for long periods of time.
- Fixed office chairs like tub chairs may be a better option for employee breakout areas and reception rooms.
- Wheeled office chairs can be difficult to assemble and some employees may find the swivel feature distracting or annoying.
Static vs swivel office chairs: what’s the verdict?
Ultimately, both static and swivel chairs can make great additions to your office. Swivel chairs are, however, the more modern option and do offer a few extra bonuses in terms of comfort and manoeuvrability. But ultimately the choice is up to you – when selecting chairs, you should consider factors such as room size, costs and comfort before making any purchases.
Find the right chair for you
Whether you opt for a swivel or static chair, there is an extensive selection of office chairs available out there. Here’s just a few of the most popular types:
Ergonomic chairs are specially designed to encourage a neutral posture and to provide enough support while you work long hours in the office. They’re usually optimised specifically for the prevention of disorders like cervical spondylosis, back pain, and poor posture and blood circulation, so if you’re spending long hours in the office this could be a worthy investment.
Common features include:
- Lumbar support
- Adjustable headrest, armrests, and seat height
- Easy swivelling
- Stable base
- Padded seat and back
- Sliding seat pan
- Adjustable tilt tension and lock
- Nylon carpet casters
Executive office chairs
Typically used by the higher-ups, executive office chairs are designed to look imposing in appearance. You’ll notice a high back, plenty of cushioning in the back, seat, and headrest, and is typically made of superior materials like fine wood and real leather – this will be the most expensive option on offer.
- PU or real leather material
- Thickly padded armrests
- Wood finish
- Waterfall edge
- Thick contoured or layered cushions
Leather office chairs
Leather office chairs are another luxurious option. There are several types of leather office chairs:
- Polyurethane (PU) Leather – PU leather (faux leather) doesn’t contain leather components, though its appearance and feel are similar to that of the real deal. They’re the cheapest among the three types of leather office chairs and are usually fade-resistant, waterproof, easy to clean, and durable.
- Bonded Leather – Also known as reconstituted leather, bonded leather is made by bonding leather byproducts with polyurethane. They’re cheaper than genuine leather, and ones that are well-made are hard to tell apart from real leather. However, bonded leather doesn’t last as long as genuine leather since it tends to peel. It shouldn’t be exposed to direct sunlight as well which can cause it to fade and dry.
- Genuine Leather – This is the most expensive out of all the types of leather office chairs. It’s unbeatable when it comes to breathability, comfort, durability, and aesthetics but it’s also the hardest one to maintain. Like bonded leather, keep your genuine leather chair away from direct sunlight to avoid fading.
Mesh back chairs
Mesh office chairs are great at providing breathability – the backrest, which is lined with this net-like fabric, is paired with cushioned seats for comfort. Most quality mesh office chairs are also designed with ergonomics in mind, coming with a waterfall edge for better blood circulation and lumbar support to minimise lower back pain.
- Height range
- Arm support
- Lumbar recline angle
- Head support adjustment
Leaning sit stand chairs
Leaning chairs have become a popular accessory with standing desks and in work environments where standing is common, such as banks and shops. They provide a way to take short rests while standing, by supporting your body as you lean backwards. Also called sit stand chairs, they are also height adjustable to allow you to fully sit down for short periods.
The conference room is the place where you brainstorm with your team, make important decisions, and entertain guests. To create a more open environment and avoid obstruction of people’s line of sight, conference chairs are usually designed with a low or mid backrest. Unlike other types of office chairs, many conference chairs promote a forward-leaning posture, by tilting the seat forward slightly. This is to encourage participation and contributions to the meeting.
- Adjustable seat height
- Low or mid height backrest
- Forward leaning chair
- Adjustable tilt tension
- Nylon casters
Source branded office chairs from Corporate Spec
If you’re in search of workplace office furniture, Corporate Spec has you covered. We’re the UK’s leading stockist of refurbished chairs, so you’re guaranteed to find the perfect fit for your office. We provide effective solutions from top designer brands such as Ahrend Royal, Boss Designs, Fritz Hansen, Herman Miller, Knoll, Steelcase, Vitra, and many more, so contact us today to find out more about the amazing products we stock.