Office workers come in different weights and sizes and it’s important your seat includes a tilt tensioner for tuning your body mass to allow for comfortable reclining.
For a moment think about weighing a cooking ingredient on a set of kitchen balance scales.
It’s easy to see when you have the right amount as it reaches an equilibrium point and is balanced.
Too much weight on one side and not enough on the other is easily identified as being way out of line with what’s needed.
Exactly the same principle applies to your computer chair, it too needs to be in balance. Otherwise you will be forever fighting it for control when leaning back in it.
So what’s needed to get things set up correctly?
Has your chair got a tilt tensioner?
Let’s get the bad news out of the way first. Your chair may not include a means of adjusting the pressure required to move the back when you recline.
Take a look on the underneath of the chair around the middle at the front of the chair. See if there is a round knurled knob, this will be the tension adjuster.
Occasionally you may find the adjuster is a crank handle underneath the chair on one side. Also some more sophisticated chairs have automatic tension control. However, it’s unlikely you will find auto adjustment on a chair costing less than $400.
OK, assuming you’ve found your seat has the adjuster what next?
How to adjust your chair’s backward tilt resistance
It’s actually very easy to adjust. On most chairs to increase the resistance of the back you would turn the knob clockwise or anti-clockwise to reduce pressure.
When you haven’t adjusted it before you can quickly assess which way to turn it. Lean back in your chair, now is it taking a lot of effort to recline, or are you moving back much too easily?
Too much effort means you need to reduce the pressure and too little needs an increase. Short or light built people usually need less pressure, whereas tall or heavier built individuals will need more pressure.
You’ll know when you have things set right because just like those kitchen scales your body will be perfectly balanced when you lean back in your chair.
Tilt tension is just 1 of 5 essential features that an office worker needs in a chair. Discover the other 4 by reading this article on what an ergonomic office chair should include.