In the past year, many of us have had to shift what our workdays look like. Where we once were in-office where we could walk to each other’s desks to deliver messages or go to the break room for a cup of coffee, many of us are now relocated to our homes.
Whether we’re still at our office desk or working from our new home office, those of us who work desk jobs have one common issue: we spend a lot of time in a chair.
Not only do we have the health concerns of sitting for too long as the risk of blood clots or a lack of circulation, but we also have extra problems when faced with uncomfortable chairs.
This leaves office workers with one first line of defense: a comfortable chair pad. Or two. Or even three. Not only do we face these concerns at work, but even sitting out on your own backyard or porch, you can be vulnerable to the problems of sitting too long.
Here’s how you can figure out which chair pad can totally change the game for those of us who spend long hours seated in chairs for one reason or another. Getting a cushion gives you all the pleasure of being more comfortable with none of the pains you are used to having.
The Problem With Uncomfortable Chairs
So what is the problem with sitting in an uncomfortable chair, other than the fact that it’s, well, uncomfortable?
The issue is that chairs were once made from wood, which promoted good posture and engaged our bodies actively. With all of the new materials that chairs are made out of, most chairs are either too deep or too soft and are more a little bit of luxury in terms of how you’re sitting.
Though the maximum comfort that goes along with the chairs seems important in the moment, the soft material is surprisingly bad for our bodies.
To combat this design flaw, we need to do things like actively check our sitting posture to compensate for our poorly designed chair. But it’s hard to do this without a little bit of assistance or a plush cushion or two.
That’s where a chair pad can shake things up and can give you the adjustments to your posture that you need.
How Can a Chair Pad Help?
A chair pad works in multiple ways to provide comfortable support to your body and encourage better sitting posture. This posture correction can continue helping you throughout the day as you build healthy muscles that maintain that healthy posture.
There are multiple different types of chair pads that help to correct different issues with posture and soreness. It’s all about finding the right combination of chair pads for you and your body.
Chair Pad Materials
First, let’s take a look at the different kinds of materials that various chair pads can be made out of.
There are many different options, here, but we’re going to go over the two most popular and latest products in home decor and office products.
Many of us know and love memory foam. Whether it’s used in our mattresses or our shoes, memory foam has made its way into all sorts of comfortable products. Whether it's a dining room set, kitchen chairs, or rocking chairs, you will find memory foam to some capacity everywhere.
Memory foam is actually made from a type of polymer that gets poured into specific shapes to fit certain dimensions depending on the product. This polymer is good at providing elasticity and viscosity, meaning it provides support where necessary but relaxes as well.
The “memory” part comes from the fact that it retains shape well, making it perfect for chair pads.
A gel is a popular material for chair pads due to its liquid nature. It not only forms to the shape of our bodies, but it also moves along with your body as it moves. It actively redistributes weight and pressure while you move as you shift your weight from the back of the cushion to the side of each cushion’s width.
It also provides a cooling sensation which is excellent for long days at the office where heat collects in the area where our backside meets our chair. You can find cushions that combine the cooling power of gel with the elastic nature of memory foam for the ideal cushion.
Types of Chair Pads
Where can you put a chair pad for your best support? The quick answer is everywhere and anywhere. Here are a few more specific ideas for chair pads.
Coccyx Seat Cushion
One of the most common and best options for chair pads is the coccyx seat cushion. Coccyx offers a comfy cushion on the bottom of your chair and supports your backside where you sit with its perfect size. They have a cutout for your coccyx, allowing it room to avoid too much pressure on this delicate part of your spine.
They also encourage proper posture by aligning your spine correctly while you sit. The cushion cover material makes it a highly recommended manufacturer that anyone with back pain should check out.
Lumbar Support Pillow
We’ve heard a whole lot about “lumbar support,” but what does it mean?
Your lumbar spine is the lowest part of your back. Your lumbar’s usage is responsible for the movement of your trunk or the rest of your spine, and it also is the area that controls your leg movements. We put a lot of pressure on our lumbar spine, so it’s no wonder why lower back pain is so common.
A lumbar support pillow ties to the bottom part of the back of your chair via straps. It curves to the shape of your lower spine, encouraging you to sit further forward in your chair instead of leaning back or slouching.
A wedge cushion is similar to a coccyx cushion in that it has a cutout portion for your coccyx bone, but it is different in that it seats you on an incline.
This strategically redistributes your weight and engages your leg muscles in unique ways, providing relief from problems like sciatica or hip pain.
When you sit in your wheelchair all day, you face a unique set of problems with seating. Since you’re placing the weight of your body solely in your hips and lower back, you need more support from your chair cushion.
That’s why you should seek a specialized seat cushion made just for your wheelchair to address your unique chair pad needs.
Elevate Your Seating Experience with a Chair Pad
If you’ve been suffering from lower back or hip pain from spending long days seated at the office, try using a chair pad to elevate your seating experience. With the quick instructions we presented, you should now be ready to find some of the best deals when looking to find chairs, whether you’re looking for online purchases or an in-person buy.
Why Sitting Too Much Is Bad for Your Health | WebMD
If Your Chair Hurts Your Back, Blame Technology, Then Try These Hacks : Shots - Health News | NPR
What is Memory Foam? | Sleep Foundation