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In this guide
Age comes with a load of good things. Like a legit reason to not want to party until 1am. It also comes with less good things. Like the ability to strain your back bending over and assorted aches and pains that you swear weren’t there a month ago. Keep your back happy when working at home by investing in the best office chair. It’ll keep your back well-supported, be adjustable to your size and keep you cool as you sweat over your huge inbox. Here are our picks for the best ergonomic office chair for your home, including ergonomic and mesh office chairs, chosen from hours of research and online shopping.
How we picked
CHOICE, Australia’s leading consumer advocacy group, hasn’t tested office chairs. But the real experts (Aussies) have. So, we began by heading to ProductReview.com.au, Australia’s first consumer opinion site. Although there were a lot of listings, most chairs didn’t have many reviews. The highest number was around 50, with most clocking up a handful of reviews (less than 5).
We sifted through to find the chairs that most delighted Aussies. We focused on office chairs, not gaming chairs. Gaming chairs tend to recline more and have bucket seats and backrests. Which means they aren’t necessarily suited to at-desk work. We worked to find a good range of budgets and materials and locally sourced options too. And there you have it, the 9 best office chairs in Australia.
What we looked for
The most important thing to look for - and what sets an office chair apart from a dining chair - is how you can adjust the chair to suit your body and needs. The bigger the range of things you can adjust, the bigger the chances of a comfortable chair. Look for adjustable armrests, lumbar (lower back) support and height. Lots of adjustability might mean a lot of levers. They should be gas powered for easy, powerful use. They should also be labelled so you know what you’re adjusting. They should be positioned in a way that avoids you overstretching to reach them.
Your lumbar is the lower part of your back. If your chair doesn't support it correctly, your lumbar area is going to let you know - it’ll be sore and achy and cause your posture to collapse. Look for great lumbar support, with extra padding that fits the natural curve in your lower back. Some chairs have none. Others have curves that are so big, they push you forward which isn’t ideal (or comfortable).
Sure, sitting on a leather chair might feel luxurious. But it’s also going to feel quite hot and sweaty too. Most office chairs opt for soft, comfortable and breathable fabric covers.
Armrests are a handy feature. They support your arm, reducing the strain of holding them up yourself while typing. They also keep your arms in the correct alignment with your body, about 90 degrees. It’s good to be able to adjust your armrests and for them to be durable. They’re not essential though.
Wheels help you avoid stretching and leaning as you reach for things. Plus, they allow you to position yourself close to your desk easily, and push away from it too when you need to get up. (They also turn chairs into excellent hallway racers for office olympics on those quieter days.)