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Chair recommendations for your home office WFH setup?

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Charlie Vuong (Eng @ Taro)10 days ago

I've been on a quest to find the best office chair for the past 2 months. You might think it's insane to spend so much time to find the perfect office chair, but if you are sitting on a chair 8+ hours/day for 10+ years, I think it's very reasonable to do the upfront work to make sure you have a chair that fits your body and encourages good ergonomics. I've also been going to PT for my back since last year, which was also a motivating factor to do more research into ergonomic office chairs.

I've tried out the following chairs:

  • Herman Miller Aeron
  • Herman Miller Mirra 2
  • Herman Miller Embody
  • Crandall Steelcase Leap V2
  • Steelcase Gesture
  • Haworth Fern

Despite trying out all of these different chairs, I haven't found a "perfect" chair that has good lumbar support and a supportive seat cushion. Some chairs will have a supportive seat cushion, but lack lumbar support. On some chairs, the lumbar support will be perfect, but I will bottom out on the seat cushion after 15 minutes.

The perfect chair for me would be a combination of the Fern's tall backrest, the Gesture's lumbar support, and the Crandall Leap V2 seat cushion.

I'm leaning towards either the Steelcase Gesture or the Haworth Fern for now. But, I'm going to try a Steelcase Amia next, which is actually the most affordable chair out of them all. The seat felt great, but the real test is how the seat holds up after sitting on it for a long period of time.

What office chair do you use?

(Also, I'm sure the best answer for better back health is to stand more 🙂)

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Discussion

(11 comments)
  • 4
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    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    10 days ago

    Agreed that your desk, chair, computer, or anything else that you use multiple hours per day is worth investing time in to get the best fit.

    I'm not as deep in the rabbit hole as you, but the brand I've been using for ~3 years now is Ticova which I'm happy with: https://www.amazon.com/Ticova-Ergonomic-Office-Chair-130%C2%B0Rocking/dp/B0C7P258ML

    I had pretty bad upper-back pain a few months ago, but that was due mostly to my monitor setup and not my chair.

  • 6
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    Senior DevOps Engineer
    10 days ago

    I've been using a Steelcase Gesture for almost 4 years at this point and it's basically perfect for me. I've actually noticed I've started to get minor back issues again now that I'm back in the office 3 days a week, so plus one for the gesture on that front.

  • 8
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    Engineer @ Robinhood
    10 days ago

    I use a wooden kitchen chair that my family's had for 20+ years.

  • 3
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    Senior Software Engineer
    9 days ago

    For those with tailbone issues like me this is indispensable https://www.amazon.com/Seat-Cushion-Office-Chair-Desk/dp/B01EBDV9BU

    Comments state it might help with back issues as well. YMMV

  • 2
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    Mid-Level Software Engineer at Other
    9 days ago

    risedesk ergo chair and autonomus chair.

    Ikea dining chair is also not bad

  • 8
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    Tech Lead/Manager at Meta, Pinterest, Kosei
    9 days ago

    One slightly morbid tactic I can recommend: if you live in the Bay Area or somewhere with dying startups, check Craigslist or Facebook Marketplace and look for used office chairs.

    These VC-backed startups spent top dollar on a fancy Herman Miller / Steelcase. Now you can get them for cheap.

    This is what happened to Kosei, the startup I joined in 2014 which got acqui-hired by Pinterest. As employees, we literally just kept a bunch of the stuff, and sold the rest. You get to benefit from the VC money :)

  • 1
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    Software Engineer at Qualtrics
    9 days ago

    Have you tried the Logitech version of Herman Miller embody? It's much more comfortable in my opinion and probably the best option out of the ones you listed!

    I've used the Gesture for 5 years and I love that chair as well, but after some time the cushion is less comfortable.

  • 5
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    Mid-Level Software Engineer [SDE 2] at Amazon
    8 days ago

    When Covid first hit, I got a chair for $150 from Staples and ended up with Sciatica in my left leg from the lack of ergonomics. Since then upgraded to a standing desk (you don't want to sit all day no matter how good the chair) and a Steelcase Gesture and have never had back problems again.

    In my opinion, every dollar you spend on making your setup more comfortable and enjoyable is worth it. You can easily recoup that money in one or two days of working.

  • 3
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    Ex-Google SWE • FE/Mobile -> BE/Distributed/AI
    8 days ago

    My current favorite is the Steelcase Leap V2 and I've had it since 2018. Not the most pretty chair out there but it has been the chair that has helped address my back/shoulder issues and find comfort while maintaining good posture. Everything is adjustable, including armrests (4-way adjustable!), lumbar support, and seat position.

    Bought it off of FB Marketplace from a steep startup sale because of cosmetic damage which worked for my priorities at the time. When I have the option to, I always request it in-office.

    • 1
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      Entry-Level Software Engineer at PayPal
      8 days ago

      The steelcase leap V2 DOES NOT DISSAPOINT!

      $300 used. and it delivers on quality! Loved it so much that I bought my brothers a chair each.

  • 0
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    Staff Data Engineer at 🧑‍💻
    8 days ago

    A good chair is useful. On a budget, I attach a lumbar support to my chair, which might be an option if you are not getting the perfect combination in a single chair.

    I don't have an adjustable height desk, like I did when I worked in the office. So, on my desk I have an elevated platform where the monitor is and one where I can place my laptop on, to spend part of my day standing. Especially for meetings, when not typing, standing feels better and easier to be up straight naturally. With an elevated laptop, or eye level camera while standing, I find it more comfortable for remote calls.