If you are like me and think a chair is just a chair, hold on to your seat. I just might be your fairy godmother sprinkling magic dust that will make you go: Huh. Never thought of that.
Our desk and chair are part of our writer tool kit. Yet our chair – or should I say the proper chair can be a writer’s best friend.
Such is the power of some recent in-store assistance I received at Office Depot. I was on a mission to buy a hole punch and scrounge left over school supplies. One can never have too many spiral notebooks. Oh, and pick up a chair. Which is exactly how I met John in the chair department. The irony, I know.
Since chairs were on sale and I was there, it only seemed right to do some test sitting. My criteria were limited: comfortable, sturdy (I hate those easy lean backs that make me think I’m falling), cheap, with a bonus of a wheeled base and triple bonus if semi-cat proof. They had a broad spectrum of chairs including a Serta line. However, I’ve never had back issues or needed anything fancy. A chair is for sitting… that was until John started talking about ergonomics.
The more he talked, the more I realized how I sit. I don’t sit with my feet flat on the floor, my legs bent at 90 degree angles. (One leg is always tucked and my feet are rarely on the floor.) I lean forward. My arm rests don’t match the height of my desk. Per John, arms rests are never to go under a desk and I keep mine low to do just that. A chair is to have upper and lower back support. Mine offers, um, none. My chair is awesome but alas, is too short for proper support.
I realized too that I tested each chair by sitting in my most comfortable position – one leg tucked under the other. Armed with all my wonderful new knowledge from John I found out of the six chairs that previously worked, only one offered the appropriate support and comfort when sitting properly. Seems mastering the perfect chair can be equivalent to finding the perfect sleep pillow.
Writers already spend what feels like eternity chained to a chair. Even if you take breaks to stretch, or walk around, sitting improperly can causes neck, back, hip and knee pain/tension, and carpel tunnel syndrome. Alleviating pain or the potential for it can be as simple as adjusting the knobs on your chair and/or buying a foot rest. We use our desk and chair every day. It make sense to have a chair that will support us along our writing journey.
Author/ Contributor: Teresa Little