The 10 Best Rolling Chairs
This wiki has been updated 33 times since it was first published in April of 2015. With comfortable seating, it's not so difficult to put in long hours finishing an important project. In an uncomfortable seat, however, you may have to stop every so often and walk around due to muscle pains and general discomfort. Our selection of rolling chairs, which are suited for different body types and budgets, are effective for both work purposes and entertaining gaming sessions. When users buy our independently chosen editorial selections, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
April 15, 2020:
Modified the listing for the GreenForest Study to explicitly point out that its weight capacity is only 200 pounds. It’s designed specifically for petite adults and teenagers, so heavier folks will want to look elsewhere. On the other hand, we adjusted the description of the Hon Wave to indicate that it is built to comfortably support large, heavy people (though certain tall individuals will find that the arm rests are positioned too low).
We upgraded the Boss Office Posture, noting that in addition to several color options, it’s available with or without arms. One of the designs is a playful zebra print — a fun choice for anyone looking to avoid creating a dreary, monotone home office atmosphere. While investigating the Office Star Light Air, we learned that the backrest includes mounting holes for attaching a headrest, which can be purchased separately.
We added a mix of styles to the list, including a small armless swivel chair, a midsize model with stylish upholstery, a high-back seat with a removable headrest, and a high-end gaming chair designed to provide support and comfort for long-term sessions.
The Vertagear SL2000 (the gaming chair) is available in an extensive range of color combinations, and we’ve noted that it comes with a bonus memory foam head pillow that straps to the top of the backrest.
October 12, 2018:
Removed the Spa Luxe Stool because of durability concerns. After investigating user claims of impressive value and support, moved the BestOffice Mid-Back into a higher slot. Added the Antlu Saddle to provide a quality option for commercial spaces like spas and dental offices.
Steelcase Protégé Those who factor the environment heavily into their purchasing decisions will be pleased to learn that Steelcase strives to craft products using primarily recyclable materials. The backrest tension of this comfortable chair is adjustable, and it can be locked securely into place in the upright position. steelcase.com
Mothershape Posture Cushion Maybe a new office chair isn’t in the budget right now, but you can still do your hips and spine a favor by utilizing this ergonomically designed seat cushion. It improves sitting posture to relieve pressure on your joints and help prevent pain or discomfort in the lower back and tailbone. mothershape.com
Choosing A Rolling Chair
Switching between positions can help alleviate pressure and reduce the impact on any specific area of the back.
There are a few major things to consider when choosing a rolling chair. Posture health may be the most important, as sitting in an odd position for long periods of time can actually negatively restructure the back. Understandably, people with back pain should look for a rolling chair that is highly adjustable. Different degrees of incline can help reduce back pain in office workers, so it is very important that the rolling chair be able to accommodate many different comfortable positions. Yet contrary to what many people believe, a straight and stiff upright posture is not always the best option for protecting the back in anyone, not just people with back pain.
A recent study suggested that more dynamic options may be best for the spine health of individuals with desk jobs. Switching between positions can help alleviate pressure and reduce the impact on any specific area of the back. This means everyone may benefit from a highly adjustable rolling chair.
Another thing to consider before purchasing a rolling chair is the quality and build of the wheels. Crumbs, hairs, and other particles can get stuck in the wheels of a rolling chair and cause them to stick. Many manufacturers are aware of this, and make their wheels easy to clean or design them to catch particles before they clog up the bearings.
Cushioning is another issue to consider. Some office workers need a lot of padding to feel comfortable, while a soft cushion would make others feel they are sinking into the chair. Along with the cushioning comes the upholstered material itself. People with sensitive skin may find synthetic cloth irritating. Some materials may also cause sweating when used for long periods. It may help to reduce the amount of time spent sitting in a chair, though many office jobs require a lot of desk time. A comfortable rolling chair is the best option in the office, but it is still important to take regular breaks and stay active.
Staying Healthy In A Rolling Chair
By now, the risks of sitting for prolonged periods of time are well documented. Sitting for long periods at a time can have negative effects on the metabolism and overall health. It is critical to break up the time spent in any sedentary, seated space. Many people working from an office building or home office feel they do not have the space or the time to break up their office routine. This could significantly affect their long-term quality of life. Luckily, workers can use some adaptations to simple exercises to help break up that stagnant seated position.
Reducing stiffness in the shoulders and back may be most important for office workers.
Reducing stiffness in the shoulders and back may be most important for office workers. This is easily done from the comfort of a rolling chair with a couple different arm exercises. Sit upright with the body away from the chair back and the feet firmly planted on the floor. Raise the arms above the head with the palms facing each other and fingers towards the sky. Gently raise the hands a little higher, and then bring the palms together. Hold this position for five seconds. Now gently rotate the wrists so the backs of the hands are touching, holding for five more seconds. Repeat the process five to 10 times for a posture-protecting workout done right from your office.
Doing some basic ankle and leg stretches while seated helps to increase circulation to the extremities.To do a basic ankle stretch, sit upright in your rolling chair with both feet flat on the floor. Straighten one foot out in front of you. With the leg straight, point the toes away from the body and hold for five seconds. Then point the toes back towards the body for five seconds. Repeat this process five times and then do the same for the other leg.
Rolling chair exercises are just one way to keep yourself healthy at work. Other things are also important, such as eating a varied diet and taking regular breaks to move about the home or office. It is also vital to be aware of your breathing when using a smartphone, tablet, or computer. We tend to actually breathe less when using devices like these, so it may help to keep a strong posture and force the body to take deep breaths.
Rolling Chair History
The rolling chair seems like a rather modern invention at first glance. In actuality, rolling chairs have their roots in the birth of the United States of America. In fact, Thomas Jefferson invented the predecessor to the rolling chair, which was a stable swivel chair.
The resulting swivel chair was the one Jefferson sat in when he signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
The first swivel chairs had the build of a standard Windsor chair, but with one key difference. The swivel chair has an element between the base and seat that allows the user to spin around without getting up out of the chair to move it. The Windsor chair Jefferson wrote from did not allow him much mobility, so he introduced an iron spindle in between the sturdy base and the seat itself. The seat then sat upon rollers borrowed from old window pulleys. The resulting swivel chair was the one Jefferson sat in when he signed the Declaration of Independence in 1776.
This change was the first major improvement in seating since the time of the ancient Egyptians. Yet there would still be many more changes before the old swivel chair resembled the modern rolling chairs found in offices worldwide. The square base gave way to a central post, which allowed for actions like reclining and even led to chairs with adjustable height. People enjoyed the added mobility of a swivel chair, and added wheels to take this mobility even further. One interesting note is that the first wheeled chair was actually invented by another well-known figure, Charles Darwin. The addition was not popular until the office boom in the late 1800s, however.
Modern inventions such as pneumatic lifts allowed for easy elevation of the seat, while complicated reclining mechanisms such as those found in modern massage chairs make leaning back a simple and safe habit. New inventions have definitely differentiated the rolling chair into the 21st century, but in many ways modern rolling chairs still resemble their 150-year-old counterparts.