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Jo Cook

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Ergonomic offices: Steelcase Think chair review


HRZone reviews the latest office equipment to help you find the best fit for your workplace and your employees. We never receive money for writing reviews and products are always returned after testing. If you have a product you’d like us to review, or would like to review a product, please email [email protected].

Category: Office Chairs
Product: Steelcase Think Chair
Price (June 2015): £260 approx.

You have probably seen headlines about how long the average office worker sits throughout a day (most of it) and how this is damaging to your health.

For those who aren’t excited about a treadmill office or where it’s not feasible or likely to have something more modern, the office chair is still a must.

I received the new Think chair from Steelcase for review and two things struck me immediately as I sat down on it.

The first was that the actual seat part of the chair was very comfortable, and I was looking forward to testing this for the long periods of time I do sit at my desk. Unfortunately the second thought was that this chair just wasn’t going to work for sitting at an office desk.

The reason for this is that the back of the chair was at an angle that didn’t seem conducive to being at a desk and typing. I obviously looked at the various adjustments on the chair and found that there wasn’t one for the angle of the back.

I did wonder if this was just me – I know I can have very good posture sometimes and am well aware that I prefer to sit very upright, as we should do, but that this isn’t how everyone likes to sit.

As I had visitors to the office, of varying heights, sizes and degrees of interest in health and ergonomics, the feedback was all the same, that the angle of the back didn’t work for sitting at a desk with a computer.

One person commented “it’s fine for sitting back in a meeting”, which it is. The way I got around this was to use a pillow behind me, to put me into the upright position I was seeking. For me, this means that there is a design failure in the first instance, but once the pillow was in place, I could appreciate the rest of the chair design.

The backing itself have a nice mesh design, which could be cool in the summer. There was a slider on the back which was a nice touch, to add some sturdiness to different parts of the lumbar spine as the individual required. This was slightly lost once I’ve got the cushion involved.

I really liked the arm rests, which were height adjustable. They didn’t have the adjustability of other chairs I’d seen, but I did notice how much I missed them once I was back to my own chair.

The seat was adjustable back and forwards, which is great for people of different proportions. I’m very tall and, sadly not super model figure I would like to be, so this adjustability was great for me. As above, this was a really comfortable seat, especially for those longer periods of time which we all know we shouldn’t do, but still do! Again, since this chair has gone back I’ve missed that comfort and have ended up with a pillow on my old seat!

There was the obvious height adjustability and modern standard base with good free-wheeling action without sliding everywhere. The materials were all of a good quality as far as I could see.

Bottom line, would I buy this chair myself? No, as the back doesn’t have the angle adjustability. However the rest of it really is great. 

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Jo Cook


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