There’s a reason they call something annoying a “pain in the neck”. It’s stressful. It’s always there.
It keeps you from doing what you’d rather be doing.
Nobody needs pain in the neck. So whether your neck pain is due to stress, long hours, or bad posture, here is the list of chairs that will help melt it away.
What Is The Best Ergonomic Chair For Neck Pain?
1. Herman Miller Embody Chair – Best Office Chair for Lower Back Pain & NECK
Embody by Herman Miller doesn’t just look like a futuristic piece of tech equipment; it is futuristic tech equipment!
Designed by more than 20 different scientists and specialists, this chair was made to support your spine like an extra spine.
The central support system with flexible extensions isn’t just for show; it actually mimics a spine and ribs. Offering you a second backbone for support and comfort. It is #1 chair for back pain!
Pixelated Support – The backrest is comprised of a multitude of flexible extensions that offer individual support.
The chair literally moves with you. The pressure points also encourage movement, keeping you from becoming strained and stiff.
Backlift Adjustment – You can adjust the backrest to fit the contours of your spine. The backrest then adapts to maintain support even as you move.
Layered Support Cushioning – The upholstery of the chair is made up of multiple layers providing unique and measured support while allowing for airflow.
Fully Adjustable – Seat height, seat depth, tilt lock, tilt tension, backrest angle, armrest angle, and height are all adjustable to give you a comfortable seat.
2. Steelcase Leap Desk Chair with Headrest – Best Ergonomic Chair With Neck Support
The Leap range from Steelcase offers flexible support to compensate for the flexible nature of the human spine.
After observing users, it became apparent to the designers at Steelcase that the spine doesn’t move as a single unit, and each person moves differently. They designed the Leap range accordingly.
The optional headrest offers extra comfort for the head and neck, relieving stress and pain from this area of the spine.
Along with head and neck support, this chair also offers separate upper and lower back adjustments, ensuring that you get the perfect fit for your spine.
Flexible Backrest – The backrest moves as you do. When you recline, it offers extra lower back support; this is especially helpful if you have a weak lower back and core.
Separate Upper and Lower Back Controls – Each spine is different, and Steelcase understands this. The separate controls allow you to set the chair just right to relieve pressure from your unique spine.
Dynamic Seat – This feature takes the pressure off your lumbar spine as you recline.
Optional Headrest – When you feel the pressure building, just pop the headrest on. When you don’t need it, you can store it away, so it’s not in your way.
Increases Productivity – When you’re sitting comfortably, you are up to 17% more productive. That means a Leap chair basically pays for itself in less than a month.
Complete Adjustability – Seat height, seat depth, degree of recline, recline resistance, lower back firmness, lumbar height, and individual armrests (height, depth, angle, and pivot) are all fully adjustable.
Flexible Seat Edge – The edge of the seat automatically adjusts to hold your legs without cutting off circulation as you move.
3. Ergohuman High Back Swivel Chair with Headrest – TOP Mid-Priced Model
The Ergohuman range of chairs are all ergonomically designed to support various seated postures.
With easy adjustments and a host of supportive features, these chairs are favored by government and military offices.
They offer both comfort and style with a variety of options to suit your specific needs. This is also one of the few models that offer adjustable backrest height.
Mesh or Padded Leather – Whether you want extra padding or more airflow, there’s an option to suit your preference. You can choose from just leather, leather, and mesh or just mesh.
Ergonomic – It’s right there in the name. This chair is designed to offer full support in a variety of postures, keeping you supported throughout the day.
3 Position Tilt Lock – This feature offers you three positions to recline into, while the tilt tension control gives you the option of choosing how easily you recline when lying back.
Easy to Adjust – Adjusting the chair is not complicated at all; there’s a single paddle on the right that makes all the adjustments you may need to make throughout the day.
Height Adjustable, Pivoting Headrest – Offers a range of positions to choose from to best suit your needs. With the proper head and neck support, neck pain is prevented, relieved, or reduced.
Height Adjustable Back – Very important for non-average height people. There are 4 height options for the backrest that are set independently from the rest of the chair.
Dynamic Lumbar Support – it is set on a spring, so it moves forward and back as you do, so your lower back is always supported.
Completely adjustable Armrests – Adjusting up or down, pivoting in or out, or sliding back and forth. These armrests move independently to give you the support you need to keep your shoulders relaxed.
Seat Depth and Height Adjustment – This allows you to set the correct height and depth of the seat for your needs.
Tilt Lock and Tension Control – With a built-in safety feature that stops the chair from slamming into your back when you release the tilt lock, this chair has more than just the standard recline features. The seat and backrest also recline separately for added stability and comfort.
4. Herman Miller Aeron Chair – Best Ergonomic Office Chair & Good For Neck Pain
The Aeron by Hernan Miller has recently been updated to incorporate new research on spine health and the ever-growing needs of office employees.
The “health-positive” design has been remastered with ver 20 years of experience in ergonomics and technology to deliver a chair that is designed to support various seated postures, something that is needed in today’s dynamic work environment.
8 Varying Support Zones – Even though the chair is made from mesh, the elastomer is specially designed to provide ergonomic support. It gives way in areas of high pressure while remaining firm in areas that require extra support.
Increased Airflow – With the mesh backrest and seat, there is no danger of embarrassing moisture buildup as air can flow freely through the fabric.
PostureFit SL – Individual pads allow you to adjust the pelvic tilt and lumbar support to give you the perfect fit for your posture.
Dynamic Support – All the features of the Aeron work together to support your spine effectively, whether you are sitting still or moving about.
Seamless Shift – Relaxing back into a fully reclined position has never been easier. There is full spinal support in any position, and the chair moves with you.
Inclusive and Environmentally Friendly Design – There are various size options available, and the chair is manufactured to have as little impact on the environment as possible.
In other words, you can get a chair that matches your size, and rest assured that you’re doing your part for the environment.
Broad Color Palette – There are multiple colors to choose from so you can pick the one that matches your office space and taste.
Fully Adjustable – Seat height, tilt tension and stop, forward tilt, lumbar support, and height, armrest height, angle, and protrusion are all adjustable.
5. Freedom Chair by Humanscale – Good Chair with Headrest
Labeled as the Gold Standard of office chairs by the New York Times, the Freedom Chair by Humanscale has set the benchmark for office chairs for almost a decade.
With a surprisingly sleek and uncluttered design, the Freedom Chair ads a sense of style and sophistication to any office space.
The model with the headrest offers extra neck and head support to ensure you don’t succumb to fatigue aches and pain as you go about your business.
Ergonomic – The backrest is designed to match the curve of your spine, with an extra dent for your spinal column to fit into. The backrest also pivots to match the contours of your upper and lower back.
Articulating Headrest – The headrest pivots to where you find it most comfortable. It also moves with you as you recline for maximum support and comfort.
Self Adjusting Recline – The specially designed mechanics of the chair ensure that it matches your body weight to give you the perfect reclining position. It’s physics.
Synchronous Armrests – The armrests are attached to the back of the chair to provide continued support in upright or reclined postures. They move as a unit, matching your movements.
Independently Adjustable – The seat, backrest, and headrest height can be positioned independently. Whether you short. Tall or somewhere in between, there’s a combination that will work for you. Adjustment is easy; the part slide and locks to your desired position.
6. Flash Furniture High Back Leather Executive Ergonomic Wood Swivel Office Chair
The Flash High Back Executive chair offers an ergonomic design with memory foam padding for enhanced comfort.
While this chair doesn’t have all of the features, some of the other models offer, it does provide good lumbar and upper back support to prevent long-term strain and possible injury as a result of bad seating.
Ergonomic – This chair is shaped to fit the shape of your spine, which supports the lower back and reduces tension in the upper back and shoulders.
High Back – The high back provides extra support to the upper back, further relieving pressure in the lower back.
Memory Foam – Memory foam molds to the contours of your body for extra support and plushness.
Waterfall Seat – The seat edge tapers down to prevent the edge from cutting into your legs and which can create discomfort and cut off circulation.
7. Staples Hyken Technical Mesh Task Chair – Best on a Budget for Neck Pain Relief
The Hyken Technical task chair from Staples is an affordable option to combat fatigue while you work.
While not offering the full range of musculoskeletal support some other options do, it is definitely worth the price.
It comes with an adjustable neck, which is a must if you suffer from neck pain.
And the other features make it a reasonable option for an even more reasonable price/
Mesh Backrest and Seat – The mesh material used on the backrest and seat allow for airflow. It keeps you cool in stressful situations and adds to comfort.
Adjustability – The armrests, seat height, headrest, and tilt tension are all adjustable. The tilt can also lock. This provides you with a few options to increase your comfort.
Ergonomic – This model provides some adjustable lumbar support and has a full back. It can also recline for when you need a break to stretch your back.
Some models not included in this review:
- Viva Office Chair
Reducing Neck and Back Pain at Work
Besides your everyday work stress, there are a number of factors that can influence neck and back pain at work. A proper sitting position is paramount to reducing physical fatigue and stress.
The Position of Your Feet:
In a proper sitting position, your feet should ideally be under your seat. Contrary to popular belief, having your feet planted on the floor or stretched out in front of you created tension in your spine.
Resting them under your seat is the most passive position your feet can be in. It is also a lot more stable than other leg positions.
Do Ergonomic Chairs Help With Neck Pain?
In a new study, “Sitting Position During Spinal Cord Injury May Influence Spinal Cord Tissue Signalling,” researchers looked at the effect of sitting on the damage done to the spinal cord in order to study rehabilitation. The study revealed that people who used ergonomic chairs for 10 months or more had less damage to the cords in their spinal columns than those who did not.
In a press release, Jennifer G. Rui, a Ph.D. student in physical therapy at Wake Forest University and lead author of the study, said, “This study indicates that using an ergonomic office chair may be a simple, low-cost method to help reduce the consequences of severe spinal cord injury.” She added, “If the findings can be reproduced in a larger, more diverse population of patients, ergonomic.
The Position of Your Legs
For the least stress on your core and spine, your legs should be relaxed and well supported, with just the right amount of bend in them.
They shouldn’t be pressing into your seat or hovering above it, just resting on it lightly. This improves circulation and further increases stability.
When adjusting seat height, aim for about a 45-degree angle at the knee but also take the height of your desk into consideration.
The Position of Your Pelvis:
This is one of the reasons proper lumbar support is so necessary. But before even getting to your lower back, look at the way your pelvis is tilting. It should be slightly forward, starting to create the curve of your lumbar spine, but not so far forward that you feel like you’re falling forward.
The Position of Your Lower Back:
Your lower back should be well supported in its natural curve. Some spines are curvier, while others are naturally straighter. Make sure you support the curvature of your spine.
If you push your bum back slightly to tilt your pelvis forward a bit, your chair should hug the contour of your lower back, offering support from your seat to your torso.
The Position of Your Upper Back:
Your torso should be over your hips, not in front of or behind them. Your chair should support your upper back comfortably in this position, not making you work to sit up straight.
Your shoulders should be relaxing slightly down and back, and your arms should be able to rest on the armrests more so than your desk, supported at the elbow.
The Position of Your Head and Neck:
When facing your screen, you should be looking roughly straight ahead, not up or down. To check how high your seat needs to be, sit up straight in your chair and look ahead comfortably.
Try to make sure that your ears are over your shoulders, then adjust the seat height until your screen is directly in your line of vision.
If your chair has neck and head support, make sure it supports the base of your head or top of your neck. Your chin should not be jutting out; it’s better to set the support back a bit more than forward as this will encourage your neck to relax backward.
You can also alleviate tension by doing some simple core, back, and neck stretches and exercises every hour to ensure you stay supple.
Key Take-Away: “Sitting up straight” can be tiresome. You need a chair that supports the proper posture. Being able to relax in the correct position reduces fatigue and stress on the body. This means positioning every part of your body correctly and ensuring you can adjust the chair to meet your body’s proportions.
Can a Chair Cause Neck Pain?
I am curious about chair-related neck hurt. Is there a difference between a soft chair and a hard chair? My husband has a low back problem that causes him pain when he sits in a hard office chair. He thinks he should not sit in such a chair, as it would worsen his problem. Is that true? Is there any other reason that the soft chair could be causing him pain? What your husband is experiencing is known as scoliosis. Although the condition is very common in women, it is far more common in men. The way scoliosis affects the spine is that it causes the spine to curve sideways from the back, much like a wavy road in the desert. There is no way to stop scoliosis, and I think that sitting in an extremely hard chair is likely to aggravate it.
Hard chairs, especially those with arms, have an extremely low center of gravity, which is why they feel so good when you sit in them. The same is true of low-to-the-ground modern upholstered office chairs. These low-to-the-ground, upright chairs are often engineered with an “extension/retraction” design. This means that the legs are extended when the chair is upright and retracted when the chair is at a sitting or reclining position. This is accomplished by a mechanism that wraps over the bottom of the chair and makes it very hard for the chair legs to grip the floor. I think your husband has developed an arthritic condition, in which the soft tissue is trapped between the hard parts of the spine. However, because of the difficulty in diagnosing this condition, I’m inclined to say he is probably just suffering from muscle aches. However, if your husband continues to have severe pain after a while in a hard chair, he should probably see a spinal surgeon, to have an x-ray taken of his spine, and perhaps, an MRI to see how much curve there is in his spine.
Features To Consider When Buying a Chair for Your Home Office
If you suffer from severe neck hurt, you’re going to want a chair that offers total spinal support. That means:Lumbar Support Upper Back and Arm Support Head and Neck Support
Sitting at your desk for 8 hours a day can become a test of strength and stamina if you pick the wrong chair. Ensure the following aspects of the chair match your height:Backrest Height and Length Lumbar Support Position Armrest Height Seat Depth Seat Height Head Support Height
You don’t want to have to sit in a scrunched-up or stretched-out position to compensate for a chair that isn’t truly form-fitting. This may mean actually going to test a couple of chairs in person to see which specs fit you best.
Finally, you want a cushioning that supports you, without being too hard or too soft.
You need to be a bit like Goldilocks here. Memory foam can be great, but you may find that some types actually compact so much that they become hard in pressure points.
Other, softer chairs may not offer you the right support as they “fade away” the longer you sit.
Coldpressed foam and foam mixes tend to offer the best support for extended periods of time, but again you will want to go product testing to find the type that works best for your body type.
If you’re bony, a softer chair will help with circulation. If you’re heavy, you may need a firmer chair for added support.
Are Mesh Back Office Chairs Good If You Are Having Neck Pain?
It depends. If you like the idea of the breathability of a mesh office chair, but you’ve heard about the way they can cut off circulation, let me offer some advice.
Not all office chairs are made equal. More expensive mesh office chairs often offer variable tension across the breathable mesh. This means that the mesh is “harder” in some areas and “softer” in others.
The variable tension offers support where needed while molding to the contours of your body in others.
A good variable tension mesh can offer better support than a traditionally upholstered office chair. BUT, not all office chairs are made equal.
So, if you’re looking for a good mesh office chair, pick your favorites and go test them. You won’t know if an office chair is going to support you correctly until you actually sit in it.
This is the sad truth about buying office furniture.
You need to make sure it matches your body. It isn’t one-size-fits-all. Twins can find the same office chair, either amazingly comfortable or the most uncomfortable seat of their experience.
Key Take-Away: My advice is, to find a few office chairs that offer what you need and go for a “test drive”. Unless you’re a driver, you’re going to spend more time in your office chair than your car, so it’s worth the time and effort.
How Can I Make My Office Chair More Comfortable?
Making an office chair more comfortable is possible. You can:
Use a small cushion behind your lower back for added lumbar support.
Add a flat cushion behind your upper back for added shoulder support.
Use a blanket for extra cushioning.
Make sure your office chair is in the correct position for the least stress on your spine.
Sitting at your desk all day doesn’t only require brain-work…Besides adjusting your office chair, you can also add some core, back, and neck exercises to your daily routine. Strengthening these muscle groups can help reduce stress and increase stamina.
Key Take-Away: While making your office chair more comfortable is possible, ensuring you use it correctly and do some form of exercise to reduce stress and increase strength is key to a happy, healthy spine.
Final Words on Chairs for Neck and Shoulder Pain
Of the models discussed today, the Freedom Chair and Ergohuman are the good-priced all-rounder options for full-back support. But you may find another model more suitable for your specific needs. But if you want simply the best model and you have a budget, these are the obvious choices.
Buying an office chair is not a simple task, especially when you suffer from back pain. It takes time and consideration to find the office chair that will work for you.
While we’ve listed the best chairs for the job, you may still want to take the time to test out your favorite models before purchasing.
This is the only way you are going to know you are buying an office chair that suits your work environment and, more importantly, your spine.