Home > The Barn Office Furniture on the history of office chairs

The Barn Office Furniture on the history of office chairs

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Every day you sit in your office chair, but you likely never really thought about where that office chair that you rely on really came from.

Today’s office chairs have a long past with a number of revolutions before getting to a position behind your office desk.

Before the mid-1800s, office chairs were not really thought as needed. This being as many businesses were individual units of shops and shop.

A general store was responsible for everything in shop doing inventory, stocking the inventory, dealing with the customers and keeping track of the day’s income and outlays.

No one was sitting long enough to necessitate an office chair.

Office chairs needed for administrative jobs:

However, as the 1800s progressed, so did the invention and usefulness of the railroads. That made it possible and easier for individual family businesses to expand and offer their same services to the other towns along the various railroad stops.

There was now one main office that coordinated things and made sure each of the individual shops was stocked and that the receipts were taken care of.

Other jobs such as telegraph typists and various administrative jobs also came online at this same time.

The people who took on these roles were the original office workers and needed a seat that could support a long day of taking care of business.

Early office chairs – a pain in the back:

The first office chair revolution was not just for comfort but function. They were designed with a swivel at the bottom.

That would allow the person in the chair to easily turn to reach a number of items without ever getting up from the seat.

The hope was by making sure the office workers had a bigger reach radius they would not get up from the chair as often and that would mean more work was getting done during the workday.

Eventually, the complaints and pains of the office workers were recognised. This is when another office chair revolution occurred, the saddle seat. This wooden chair seat was a bit more contoured to be more comfortable over many seated hours.

Many also had armrests and some back adjustment to give the worker a little flexibility in their seated support.

Ergonomic office chairs come into being:

There were periodic tweaks and from time to time styles changed, but no major office chair revolution would come about again until the 1970s.

This is when the world learned of ergonomics. This new research into the needs and injuries of office workers sent all office chair makers rushing to be able to create the most comfortable, supportive and yet still useful chair on the market that would keep workers from complaining of neck and back pain after hours at work.

When you consider an office chair purchase today, make sure to go to a reputable dealer, such as The Barn Office Furniture, where you can find a wide variety of ergonomic office chairs with all the adjustments needed to fit every body type, including adjustable backs and back supports, height, and armrests.

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