24 May 2021
Looking for a Chair for Elderly? Here’s Why Ergonomics is a Must-Have
Cover image source: Andrea Piacquadio on Pexels
Are you here on behalf of your parent?
Someone who’s over their 60’s, spends the bulk of their time seated at a desk, and often complains about being riddled with aches no thanks to old age and the lack of support from their chairs?
A high percentage of the walk-in customers in our showroom is, and you’ll be relieved to hear that you (and they) are on the right track to solving your parent’s pain woes:
Ergonomic chairs are designed to allow maximum support, comfort, and safety for everyone, making them the perfect chair for elderly persons.
Here’s why you should throw their old chair out and get an ergonomic one, ASAP.
Table of Contents1. Understanding why a non-ergonomic chair doesn't make the cut2. Why ergonomics is a must-have in a chair for elderly persons2.1. Ergonomic chairs provide the comfort that elderly deserve2.2. Ergonomic chairs provide the mobility that elderly desire2.3. Ergonomic chairs provide the safety that elderly need3. Bonus reason why ErgoTune is a good geriatric chair choice
Understanding why a non-ergonomic chair doesn't make the cut
It’s a long-held notion that one of the top causes of back and neck pains in working adults – who are in their prime, mind you – is sitting for long periods in bad posture, which can be rectified with the help of an ergonomic chair.
This is supported by the Workplace Safety and Health Report conducted by the Ministry of Manpower, which uncovered that work-related musculoskeletal disorders inclusive of back injuries due to ergonomic risks were the leading occupational disease in 2019.
Source: Workplace Safety and Health Report 2019
On top of that, studies have proven that improvements in posture are positively linked to reduced pain in people with spinal and shoulder pain.
Now think about this:
Due to their age, our elderly parents are highly likely to have accumulated more joint and muscle wear-and-tear than us.
All these lead to a conclusion that’s as clear as day:
Whatever painful afflictions we feel from the lack of ergonomics, our elderly parents feel it too, at an amplified level.
It’s no wonder, then, that your elderly parent is complaining so often about pains all over without an ergonomic chair!
Whether your aged parents need a chair for them to sit on comfortably while they work, watch the latest drama series, or play online backgammon, it’s clear that a non-ergonomic chair is not well-suited for the elderly, no matter how “comfy” it seems on the surface.
Why ergonomics is a must-have in a chair for elderly persons
We mentioned earlier that an ergonomic chair can help to rectify bad posture, which in turn alleviates back and neck pains and is therefore beneficial for elderly, who are more prone to these ailments.
But beyond that, there are other reasons why ergonomic chairs is a must-have for the pioneer generation: comfort, mobility, safety.
Why do we say so?
Case in point:
A study was done at aged care facilities to assess the problems that the elderly residents have with the chairs that they use.
Interesting points surfaced from the results, which are namely:
- Elderly residents preferred chairs above the recommended height for older people because they provided greater mobility.
- Armrests were essential for the ease of entry and getting up, but they need to be easy to grip.
- Many geriatric residents struggled with chairs that had seat pans that were too deep; most were forced to slump uncomfortably because their feet could not touch the floor.
- Most elderly residents used cushions to relieve discomfort where possible.
The study concluded that in order for a chair to be comfortable yet easy-to-use for the elderly, it needs to have an adjustable seat height, seat depth, armrests, and provide adequate support where necessary.
It also needs to be incredibly sturdy, because the elderly often rest their weight on the armrests to hoist themselves up and down.
Can you see how an ergonomic chair provides the comfort, mobility, and safety that is lacking from the study’s findings?
1. Ergonomic chairs provide the comfort that elderly deserve
Firstly, ergonomic chairs are highly adjustable, which is why they can adapt to your parents’ physical needs no matter their body shape or size and promote good posture.
They also come with built-in lumbar support, a vital component of lower back comfort that cannot be replaced by a mere pillow or cushion!
So, if your elderly parents’ feet can’t touch the ground, simply lower the chair’s height so that they don’t have to slouch and strain their bodies.
And if your elderly parents need some lower back support? No problem – just adjust the lumbar support till it fits snugly to their lumbar region!
You get the point.
Ergonomics will transform a chair into the crème de la crème of geriatric chairs, and if your parent is free from pain, they will naturally lead happier, more independent lives.
2. Ergonomic chairs provide the mobility that elderly desire
Due to various age-related ailments such as stiff joints and arthritis, our elderly parents cannot move as freely as they used to, much to their chagrin.
A simple task such as getting up from a chair can be more difficult than you and I can ever imagine, but an ergonomic chair makes it easier to get into and out of a sitting position.
One way it does so is by being capable of a tall height, as compared to a lot of seating for elderly persons that are built low and designed to make you sink into them.
The elderly residents of the aged-care facilities (scroll up to read the study above if you haven’t!) reported that they preferred chairs above the recommended height for older people because they made it more convenient to move about, and we believe that your parents will feel the same.
3. Ergonomic chairs provide the safety that elderly need
Left: ErgoTune Supreme | Right: ErgoTune Classic
Okay, we can’t speak for all ergonomic chairs, but our ErgoTune Supreme is a superb chair for elderly persons because it’s sturdy as hell.
You can read more about our chair in detail here, but in short, the ErgoTune Supreme features:
- Adjustable seat height feature – Tailor the chair to the user's height, which also relieves focused pressure on thighs etc.
- Adjustable backrest recline angle, tension, and a lock to fix your backrest in place – Your elderly parent can recline in their seat and take a break whenever
- Adjustable seat pan depth – No more slouching and always ensuring full contact with the back support
- Built-in auto-adaptable lumbar support – Always maintain a good posture
- Padded armrests adjustable in height and angle – Sit and stand easily
- Headrest adjustable in height, depth, and tilt angle – More support for your elderly parents’ head and neck
- Easy to clean, breathable mesh that is comfortable yet durable – Good for hot weather, quick cleaning, and long-time use
And most importantly...
- 8. 5-point chair base to increase stability – Reduce fall risk
Elderly persons often hold onto a chair’s armrest as support when hoisting themselves out of the chair or plopping down onto it.
This means that they will be putting almost all of their weight on the armrests, and if the chair’s base is not sturdy enough, there’s risk of the chair tipping over.
A fall is never good for an elderly.
Every family with elderly members are very aware of that.
So to prevent any accidents from happening, we’ve ensured that our ErgoTune Supreme chair design features a chair base with 5 wheels! This greatly boosts stability, allowing you to rest assured that the chair and its armrests have the ability to withstand your parents’ weight and keep them safe.
Bonus reason why ErgoTune is a good geriatric chair choice
The ErgoTune Supreme’s seat and backrest frame is covered with a unique, hybrid fabric-mesh material that combines the best of both worlds:
The comfortable softness from fabric, and the reliable durability from mesh.
It also makes the chair breathable, which means that your elderly parents won’t feel sticky and warm even after sitting in it for long hours with just a fan on – we know that most of our parents refuse to the use the A/C.
Because it’s mesh, it’s also easy to clean, which will definitely please all – if not most – elderly Asian moms!
What your parent may need is an ergonomic chair, really
The earlier you help your elderly parents find an ergonomic chair, the earlier they can feel relief!
If you search "geriatric chair" or "chair for elderly" on the internet, you’re often greeted with a slew of geriatric medical recliners that you'd expect to see in a nursing home or hospital.
A geriatric recliner is often bulky and does not look the most sophisticated since it's catered to meet the needs of senior patients who require special medical care, which may cause many of our parents to eschew it with disdain.
Rightfully so too, if we may say so ourselves!
Regardless of age, elderly parents who are still independent and capable of moving around by themselves will benefit greatly from quality ergonomic chairs alone.
A high-quality ergonomic chair like the ErgoTune Supreme will not only act as a great support to minimise pain and increase mobility, but also help to meet the psychological needs of the elderly by boosting their sense of agency, pride, and self-satisfaction.
So if you’re searching for a chair for elderly persons because your parents asked you to, or if you’re thinking about getting them a better-suited chair for an occasion like Father’s Day, just go for an ergonomic chair if that’s all they need.
If your elderly parents’ joint or back pains are severe, we recommend consulting a doctor or medical professional for their advice before purchasing an ergonomic chair as a solution.
P.S. We provide free shipping!
Considering the ErgoTune Supreme but still have some queries in mind? Here’s our FAQ page to answer all your doubts, from free shipping to our 12-year warranty.
Our showroom is also still open, so feel free to drop by with your elderly parents to shop around, give our chairs a whirl, and try out all their functions!
If you wish to browse more ergonomic home office furniture, here’s where you can find an ergonomic desk and other accessories.