We can fidget, toss, or turn in our traditional chairs. But to reduce the risk of pain in the lower back, the most common question we ask ourselves is this – Is there a better chair in the market for back pain?
Well, as an answer to your problem, kneeling chairs have lately come into the limelight.
As per doctors’ and researchers’ studies globally, the impacts of sitting and working for a long time are very hazardous.
Slouching on a traditional office chair and staying busy for long periods can strain your lower back, shoulders, and neck and result in unwanted pain.
However, before you ensure that you are making the right choice, you need to understand about the Pros and Cons of Kneeling Chairs.
A Norwegian doctor designed the first kneeling chair. Made out of top quality wood, the sleek design, and the sitting posture’s idea turned this chair into a real success.
Although most chairs that you see today are made of a metal frame, options like Varier Balans are still available in wood.
- The ONLY original kneeling chair designed by Peter Opsvik in 1979, an instantly recognizable design icon
- It is lightweight and can easily be moved around. Variable is intended for use with standard height desks
- Its curved runners allow for gentle rocking motions, making it more ergonomic and comfortable than traditional office chairs
- Now includes FREE soft tape ($50 value) for floor protection! Avoid scratches on hard floors
A kneeling chair is designed with a handled seat, which tends to make the body shift forward. The shin rests take the pressure of the lower body when you sit. This posture of sitting has several ergonomic benefits but also brings along certain drawbacks.
Here, in this article, we bring you the golden opportunity to get the benefits of using a kneeling chair to work.
We have also provided a brief comparison between the types of kneeling chairs available in the market for better evaluation.
How to sit in a kneeling chair?
Well, sitting on a kneeling chair is all about posture. The bottom takes the entire body weight while the knee pads provide support to the shins or knees.
If you are sitting on a kneeling chair for the first time, you must begin seated on the kneeling seat. Once you are comfortable with it, you can choose to put your entire body weight on your buttocks and sit like a pro!
However, if you use this chair at work, you need to ensure that you change your sitting positions frequently and take short breaks in between. Here are a few sitting variations which you can try to give way to movement:
- Leaving the right knee on the knee pad while placing the left foot on the floor. Keep the leg extended in the front and reverse it between legs often to ensure movement.
- You can place both your feet on the floor and outstretch the legs.
It is always recommended to keep a traditional chair handy so that you can switch between both, without causing too much strain on your lower back and knees.
How does a kneeling chair work?
The kneeling chairs are designed to open the angle of the body by tilting the seat forward. This arrangement helps in maintaining the spine alignment while the person is sitting and working on his desk.
If you are sitting on this chair, you will understand that even when you lean forward, the body’s angle remains at 90 degrees or more.
People hold a concept that the knees have to take the body-weight when sitting on a kneeling chair. However, it is a false idea. You can see yourself
The knee rests support the person and keep him/her from falling forward.
The body weight is distributed evenly between the buttocks and the legs, utilizing the core muscles to maintain the right sitting posture without slouching back or crouching forward.
The sitting posture helps eliminate the weight on the lower back, getting it rid of the pain.
Kneeling Chair Benefits – Explained
The kneeling chair brings along several added benefits. When you sit on this chair, the pelvis tends to get tilted towards the front. As a result, the spine takes up the correct alignment, utilizing the core muscles.
This posture is useful not only for eliminating the pressure on the coccyx region but also for imported digestion. The internal organs are released from compression when you sit correctly with the pelvis in the open position, allowing the body to function smoothly.
Regular use of a kneeling chair strengthens the core and back muscles, releasing you from the pain caused due to strain. Here are the significant points of benefits offered by a typical kneeling chair:
- Kneeling chairs creates a 110° thigh angle, which is higher compared to the traditional chairs. It results in a reduction of pressure on the disc of your spine while sitting.
- The seat alignment makes your hip slide forward when sitting. It leads to an even distribution of weight between your buttocks and legs. It eliminates stress and reduces compression on the spine.
- It helps to ease out pain, resulting in increased efficiency at work.
- These kneeling chairs offer adjustability options. You can easily change the height of the angle of the seat’s slope based on your work. It allows regulating the pressure on your shins.
All in All, kneeling chairs are a fantastic choice as compared to traditional office chairs.
It checks on poor posture, circulation, and back pain caused due to prolonged work hours. You can actually have a kneeling chair and a regular office chair if you are working from home and choose to switch between both your options to put an end to these health issues.
Kneeling Chair Disadvantages
Just like any other product, the kneeling chair also brings along certain disadvantages which can be described as:
- The leg movements are very likely to get restricted if you use the kneeling chair for too long.
- Exposure to shins to extended pressure can lead to pain in the long run.
- Often due to prolonged use, the circulation to legs gets restricted, which may cause difficulty each time you try to get up or sit down.
Well, these disadvantages only mean that you must not depend on kneeling chairs as your sole sitting option. As mentioned before, you must interchange with a regular chair for better results.
Kneeling Chair vs Regular Office Chair
Coming to the comparison between a kneeling chair and a regular office chair, the vote would always go with a kneeling chair.
When you use an ergonomic kneeling chair, the pelvis is tilted forward, and the spine takes up the right alignment. Your core and back muscles will get intense with regular use because the absence of backrest engages the back and the abdominal muscles.
In the traditional office chair, the backrest often results in slouching and putting pressure on the spine, causing pain in the lower back.
Also, the angel created by the kneeling chair is quite complete compared to a regular chair. This angle helps in the reduction of the pressure on the spinal discs.
The sitting posture on the kneeling chair reduces compression on the lower back and spine. You can easily adjust the seat height and seat slope to minimize your shins’ pressure when needed.
Kneeling Chair vs Ball Chair
The ball chairs are made up of exercise balls that were used for physical therapy. In these chairs, a base is added with the ball. It allows you to sit like a chair and work. The excellent idea of it is to promote active sitting with better posture and micro-movements of the muscles.
However, it has certain drawbacks. Sitting on a ball for a prolonged period puts in load on the lower back, resulting in lower back pain. Also, this chair does not offer adjustability. They work only with a fixed-sized desk. Also, if the ball is deflated, it can cause a severe imbalance in the upper body’s posture.
So, if compared to kneeling chairs, the ball chair is not the right choice. Kneeling chairs offer the same advantages with sturdiness and longe term durability.
However, as per research by Conwell University, you must always keep a traditional office chair handy and switch between both throughout the day. It will allow you to practice active sitting along with a fair deal of maintaining your body posture and stance.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
Are kneeling chairs good for your back?
The kneeling chairs are the best solution to your lower back pain. The seat’s design and angle allow the user to sit in an upright position without putting too much pressure on the back. Sitting for long periods usually slows the body down, accusing fatigue and lethargy. With kneeling chairs, the body can stay charged as it encourages active movement. Also, as these chairs do not have back support, the core muscles work to maintain the right posture, avoiding slouching.
Are kneeling chairs comfortable?
There is no doubt when it comes to the benefits of the kneeling chairs. Designed especially for people suffering from pain in the lower back, this chair corrects sitting posture by diving the bodyweight between buttocks and legs. It engages the core muscles, which eliminates the cause of back pain. The seats are adjustable and offer a comfortable sitting alternative maintaining the natural upright posture. However, you must avoid sitting on it for too long and take breaks occasionally.
Are kneeling chairs bad for your knees?
Although these kneeling chairs are home to several advantages, they also bring certain disadvantages in your knee health. If you sit on a kneeling chair for too long, the leg movements are very likely to get restricted. This may cause issues to your muscles. Also, the pressure on your shins for an extended period can lead to pain. The posture restricts the circulation to the legs, making it difficult for you to get up after sitting for a prolonged time.