• Select Office Furniture

Do I really need to spend a lot on a chair?

Spending big on an office chair sounds stupid to some, but is it really that ridiculous?


Here at Select we understand that saving money wherever you can is extremely important, after all, we are human too. However, working in the furniture industry for as long as we have (27 years!) you begin to understand the importance of the more expensive, high quality furniture.


To illustrate this we follow the ‘comfort principal’. This principal is where you as an individual need to assess the amount of time that you spend using something on a daily basis and whether the cost of improving this is worth it. This could be your phone, your couch, your bed and of course, your office chair. An example of your day could be the following:

  • Spending 8 hours in your office chair,

  • Spending 8 hours in bed,

  • Spending 2 hours watching TV,

  • Spending 1 hour doing a fitness activity,

  • Spending 1 hour cooking.

The list could of course go on; however, I think we get the point. To assess the need for a high-quality office chair we will find out how much of our actual day we use it for. Subtracting 8 hours from the day for sleeping means I'm spending 10 out of 16 hours, or 62% of my waking day, in this chair. That's a pretty large percentage of my time. Now apply the comfort principal. Would I rather spend 62% of my time just ‘making do’ in an average chair, powering through in relative misery, or would I rather spend it in comfort? The longer you spend on a task, the easier the question becomes. Personally I would much rather spend 62% of my time comfortably rather than suffering from back pain and aches. This decision process makes it much more straightforward.


If you prefer looking at the issue in numbers, then simply find out how many hours a year you will be using this office chair. 10 hours/day * 5 days/week * 52 weeks/year = 2600 hours a year that you're sitting on that chair. (You'll have some weeks off for holiday, but you'll also probably be working late, or working weekends, so let's just say it evens out.) If you purchase a chair for £400 and divide this by the number of hours used per year is comes out at 15p per hour or £33 a month for the best comfort. The numbers get even better if you factor in the time the chair will last, and with a chair of this price, it is always 5+ years.


Using the ‘comfort principal’ is great for assessing the need for these higher quality and higher priced items. Studies conducted by Vitality – Britain’s Healthiest workplace show that being healthier at work increases your bottom line and productivity. Having the right chair to make you comfortable in the long hours you spend at work can really make a difference.


The chairs pictured above may look similar in many ways, but each vastly varies in price and can all be comfortable depending on the user!


We understand that you may be an employee, and convincing your manager that you need a more expensive chair might be difficult. You may have more luck getting smaller things such as foot rests or ergonomic keyboards for instance. However, if they don’t budge it is worthwhile spending your own money on your comfort. That way you can take your chair, keyboard or footrest with you wherever you go in the future.


At Select we realise the importance of finding the right chair, we are not necessarily here to sell you the most expensive. Just give us a call or come to our showroom to find out more and how we can help you get the most comfort for your day to day life.

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3 Western Way

Bury St Edmunds

IP33 3SP

T: 01284 767670

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