You might have seen many posture-related memes making rounds on social media. Perhaps you have shared a good laugh over them as well. But notwithstanding their comic value, these humorous posts are mostly based in reality and satirically address issues that are nothing to sneeze at. Yes, bad posture is a pressing issue because of its long-term and perturbing consequences, but no, not many people recognize it as such. Maybe you were previously one of these people but are now starting to realize that such jests and ailments apply to you as well.
If you have hit the mark with the assumption mentioned above, fret not! Because today we are going to teach you how to properly park yourself in a chair for an improved posture. Since gamers—both young and old—and 9-to-5 employees are the most largely menaced communities when it comes to postural problems; we will primarily be tackling the question of sitting in a gaming chair—which may alternately be used as a work chair. You can also get some guidance on the features you should be looking for while buying a chair.
What is in the Size?
First things first, you need to ensure that your chair befits your dimensions and is the right size. While some people might disagree, chair sizes largely dictate your seating experience and posture. Thus, it would be foolish not to consider your weight and height in a gaming chair purchase if you are concerned about the state of your spine.
Where the various size guides that are readily available on the internet should be enough to point you in the right direction, you can also check in with the retailers about sizes. For the online alternative, simply punch in your details, and the sites will give you a list of chairs as per your measurements.
Unfortunately and understandably, this step needs to qualify the question of seating etiquette. Nonetheless, if you have already invested in the wrong size, you can still utilize some of the upcoming tips and tricks to amend your arched posture.
To assess if your chair is the right height for your setup, firstly, see if you can firmly plant your feet on the floor or not. Secondly, push your hips back till they are somewhat against the backrest. If, after all this, your feet are still flat on the ground and align with your hips, then you do not need to make any adjustments. However, for these judgments to be accurate, you need to remember not to slouch, keep your knees below your hips, and not crane your neck forward. We know that these tips are coming off as absurd, but they will surely alleviate hamstrings, numbness, and backache.
If you are more of a precision kind of a person, then go for a 90-degree angle for both your upper body and lower extremities.
Seat Tilt Configuration
The seat tilt mechanism is characteristic of several top-notch gaming chairs and can be adjusted using the knob at the bottom of these chairs. You should configure it to lean forward for enhanced breathing and a galvanized digestion on top of a good posture. This forward orientation will not only alleviate the tension in your muscles by jerking your pelvis forward but also give more room for your lungs and abdomen to function. Thus, a chair equipped with these mechanics helps kill three birds instead of two—with one stone.
If you want to remain an upright man/woman ten years down the line, make sure that your spine is always against the backrest. If you have made the proper tilt adjustments, then the lumbar support—literally aimed at reducing your spine and backrest gap—will needlessly press against your back. Therefore one crucial thing to note before investing in a gaming chair, besides your dimensions, is how well the backrest complements the curve of your spine.
Remember that although initially, the lumbar cushion might feel like an impediment, you will come to thank it later on.
A fun hack for those of you who, unfortunately—and surprisingly—do not have a lumbar cushion is using a rolled-up towel or yoga mat as a makeshift one. We agree that it is a little nonsensical, but it does the job.
Seat Depth Regulations
Ergonomic chairs are manufactured with seat depth adjustments to accommodate people with different body types. People who have shorter legs usually hang off the edge of their seats and do not lean against the backrest as advised. This is a fatal mistake! If you genuinely want to correct your posture, you need to ensure that the edge of your seat is at a suitable distance from your knees—regardless of your thigh length. A 2-3 finger width is what we would suggest for a more comfortable outcome contrasted to the normal numbness.
To avoid sore arms and hunched shoulders, adjust your armrests to be in line with your desk. The other best way to go about this is to relax your forearms and see where your shoulders feel most relieved.
For chairs that proffer sideway adjustments, the general rule of thumb is to extend your arms neither overly forward nor shrink them into your torso during positioning. For best results, we recommend making adjustments as per the width of your shoulder girdle.
The Necessity of a Neck Support
Even though the neck support will be rendered useless if you are sitting bolt upright, it can still be put to good use. A little leaning back and relaxing will definitely ease your neck and boost performance, so try pausing and do that in-between session—or every once in a while you take a break.
This step is all the more important for gamers who frequently experience headaches. It is very likely that these are tension-induced headaches from overworking the tendons in your neck and a clenched jaw. If this is the case with you, then your neck support is your best friend. Use it often and use it wisely!
Some Additional Tips for Added Comfort
- Try placing your monitor some 20 to 25 inches away from your face and make sure that it is level with your eyes. This positioning will help you retain your posture more easily.
- The closer your chair is to your desk, the less likely you are to strain your neck from constant protruding.
- Keep it moving! In simpler terms, move about to improve circulation and avoid numbness. Better circulation will, in turn, accentuate concentration and sharpen your reflexes.
What should I do if my feet do not reach the ground?
If you have trouble firmly planting your feet, you must have invested in the wrong-sized chair. Short people who accidentally buy chairs geared at average or tall people commonly face this problem. Nonetheless, you can make up for this with a footrest. These footrests cost around $30-50 and are a bargain compared to posture-correcting therapies and procedures.
How can I make do with a chair that does not fit my dimensions?
The best way to deal with this problem is by investing in seat cushions and similar add-ons, or maybe even a nifty person. Where the first two options will help allay the weight and height-related problems, the nifty person might have the hacks to make the seat feel like it was cut out for your body alone. However, these things might cost a few extra bucks therewithal the already expensive gaming chair.
How much does a lumbar support pillow typically cost?
Depending on their material and specifications, they can cost around $20-30. You can find some cheaper ones, but they might not offer the best results for conformity and foam memory.
What is the best chair for someone who is 5’7?
A medium-sized chair would be well-suited to a person of that height; however, it is challenging to pinpoint accurately how different bodies can be despite similar measurements. We recommend taking an online quiz in order to address this query.
We agree that one can get carried away while gaming; however, the myriad problems that stem from a bad posture are a hefty price to pay for a few hours of enjoyment. Sadly there might also come a time when these very problems will become hurdles to your gaming sessions. Thus, if you want to continue gaming effectively and healthily, be mindful of your posture and sit correctly. If you want to see actual results and improvements, then ensure that sitting correctly does not entail the first few minutes of your gaming marathon only but the entirety of the session.
Lastly, we would advise you to curtail your gaming sessions to two to three hours maximum because some damages—diabetes from a sedentary lifestyle, for instance—are not reversible. Therefore, prioritize your health, and take ample breaks and walks amidst your sessions.
All in all, game to your heart’s desire, but game safely and responsibly since there is only so much that a proper sitting etiquette can redeem and redress. And if these tips do not seem to help, then it is probably time for you to head to the doctor or a chiropractor.