It’s commonly known that ergonomic drafting chairs are a must-have for people in professions such as architecture, engineering, and various design fields, but they can also be a good fit in some other applications, such as retail. Here are some of the issues you’ll need to be aware of if you need to purchase ergonomic drafting chairs.
What are ergonomic drafting chairs?
Drafting chairs are chairs that are designed primarily to be used with drafting tables. Since drafting tables tend to stand much higher than other tables, it follows that drafting chairs are proportionately taller than most chairs. Drafting tables also generally need to have the seat at an angle, so as to allow the user to have a better view, and to be able to easily reach all parts of the table.
The height of a drafting chair or stool necessitates the presence of a foot rest, or foot ring. Drafting chairs have a foot rest built into the chair in order to provide support to the user. Without this support, the user’s legs would dangle, leading to discomfort, numbness, and possibly circulation problems with long-term use.
Ergonomic drafting chairs are drafting chairs with a special emphasis on ergonomic design, and as such they usually have special features that help to provide more support to the user and prevent the discomfort that can otherwise result from prolonged sitting in a non-ergonomic drafting chair.
The most important feature to have in an ergonomic drafting chair is easy adjustability. As with any ergonomic chair, it will always be necessary to adjust an ergonomic drafting chair in order to find the ideal fit for your body and posture. Some ergonomic chairs aren’t as easy to adjust as they ought to be, and this issue can be exacerbated with drafting chairs, because they sit higher and at a different angle.
High-quality ergonomic chairs of any type are usually very solidly built, but it is especially important that ergonomic drafting chairs have a solid, durable base. Make sure that the foot rest is durable and doesn’t have any “give,” and that the foot rest remains comfortable when adjusted to your height.
Good Drafting Chairs Options
Some high-end ergonomic chair models are available with optional drafting kits, or in separate drafting versions. Here are what we consider some of the best ergonomic drafting chairs on the market, offering quality, durability, and comfort.
The Steelcase Leap chair is a great all-around chair that should appeal to a large portion of the population thanks to its adjustability. It’s probably the closest thing to a one-size-fits-all ergonomic chair as there is. The Leap is available in a drafting version; our full review of the Leap can be found here.
The Steelcase Think chair is also available in drafting form, and its unique look may appeal to the artistically inclined. Check out our full review of the Think here.
The Herman Miller Aeron chair is the most popular ergonomic chair on the market. The optional drafting kit makes it appropriate for use as a drafting chair. You can read our full review of the Aeron here.
The Humanscale Freedom chair is one of the more unconventional ergonomic chairs we’ve seen, and it’s another that has optional drafting chairs features. Our full review of the Freedom can be found here.