As a trained Occupational Therapist, I see a lot of people with poor posture and back pain.
And you won’t be surprised to hear that it mostly comes from sitting.
So what’s the solution if you need to sit down for work all day?
The answer might be using an Ergonomic Kneeling Chair.
The benefits of these chairs have a lot of scientific backing from improving posture, hip position, and overall productivity.
But the question is, which is the best kneeling chair for you?
Taking ergonomics, price, quality into consideration, I have to say that the Dragonn Ergonomic Kneeling Chair is your best option.
I’ll go through some of the positives of this chair and also recommend some other worthy options on the market too.
My Favorite Kneeling Chair
- Comes with a thick, 3-inch mesh cushion for extra comfort
- Four wheels give chair more mobility
- A metal base ensures a stronger, sturdier design
- Height adjustable from 21 to 28 inches
The Dragonn Chair is my top choice when it comes to kneeling chairs. For its modest price, you really get amazing value- in the form of ergonomic comfort and quality design.
The angle of the seat promotes good posture and is especially effective at eliminating lower back pain.
The chair has some nice padding for your knees, which is great for reducing pressure on them.
I also love the fact you get a little ab workout while using the chair and lower back pain seems to go away.
It is compact and not intrusive at all, so it could be used in other areas of the house.
The strong metal base ensures that the product is long-lasting and safe for heavier people as well.
What’s great about it
- Great for posture alignment
- Effective for lower back pain
- Can hold up to 250 pounds
- The height can be adjusted for your needs
What I don’t like
- This is not a particularly pretty design and that may bother some people.
Want to know more about this kneeling chair? Our ergonomics specialist, Billy Everette recently published an in depth review about the Dragonn Kneeling Chair.
My Second Choice
- Unique design opens the hip angle for better posture
- Has bigger and thicker knee and seat cushions
- Stronger and bigger frame than competitors' products
- Has 3 cross bars for added durability
Running in a close second is the Sleekform rocking chair. People say this chair rocks (Pun intended!) and it offers the most comfortable kneeling position.
Whether you like this chair will depend on whether you’re a fan of the rocking movement.
The padded seat and knee rest are thicker than those on other products, yet give just the right support.
The rocking motion is a great add-on as it stimulates blood circulation. Apart from all of these features, this kneeling chair is also ergonomically sound and provides effective relief for back pain.
What’s great about this chair
- Very comfortable
- Sitting position opens the hips, helping the user to sit more upright
- Suitable for tall people
- Bigger and stronger than other products
- Has extra crossbars (others have one)
What I don’t like
- There aren’t many things to complain about. Perhaps some users will find the chair too big – so it is not recommended for workers in small office spaces or cubicles.
Other points to consider
- Can take people of up to 220 pounds
- The rocking motion exercises your core – plus keeps you awake!
- Encourages good posture, keeps you from slouching
- Increases blood flow to the back
In our in depth Sleekform Review we take a closer look at their range of kneeling chairs.
Highest Quality Chair
- Superior Norwegian ergonomic design
- Designed to encourage active sitting
- Highly rated by customer
The only reason why this kneeling chair wasn’t my top choice was because of price.
So if budget is not an issue for you, I would strongly recommend this chair.
The Varier company are known for creating extremely high quality ergonomic products- and this chair is no exception.
The chair is overwhelming liked by customers- particularly when it comes to comfort. This is great because comfort can be an issue when it comes to kneeling chairs.
Apart from the superior comfort level, most people claim it does promote active sitting (or kneeling) as the design of the chair activates the core.
Like I said before, if budget isn’t an issue- go for this chair.
Kneeling Chair Benefits
Kneeling chairs have been developed with our current workplaces and offices in mind.
Not only do kneeling chairs assist a user in sitting properly in front of the computer, they can also help strengthen core muscles.
What the research says
Significant research has been done regarding how people work and how to help them be healthier and more productive in the workplace. This field is called “ergonomics” and experts say that kneeling chairs have many advantages:
- It corrects spine position and hip placement in a seated position
- The body is aligned into a natural seated position
- The seat is set back, giving the hips more comfort
- Provides pain and stress relief to the lower back
- Allows for greater (and more functional ) mobility (while seated by the use of one foot)
- Heightens work concentration for longer periods of time (added from the next list)
Vaucher et al. (2015) conducted a cross-sectional study for 10 participants with chronic low back pain. While this group used the kneeling chair, researchers compared findings against a control group of 10 healthy individuals using a standard, flat-backed sitting chair.
Results revealed that participants who used to kneeling chair had a reduction in two spinal positions; lumbar lordosis and sacral slope. Kneeling chairs in this study seem to neutralize the pelvic tilt into a healthier, less painful position.
Houcke et al. (2016) had additional findings regarding the positive impact kneeling chairs have on the hips in prolonged sitting.
As compared to a simple chair, kneeling chairs reduce the hip flexion angle (increased bending at the hips as seen in deep-seated chairs).
Deep seated chairs tend to irritate the ball-and-socket portion of the hip joints and can contribute to hip diseases such as femoroacetabular impingement.
Isn’t kneeling uncomfortable?
Until you have tried a kneeling chair, you won’t know how comfortable it is. It might look strange and even uncomfortable to those familiar with traditional chairs. While some users say it took them a while to get used to sitting like this, the vast majority of people love the way kneeling chairs feel. The kneeling chairs transform the way you sit by:
- Making you lean forward – instead of back
- The angled seat takes tension from the body
- It positions you to sit upright, which is the correct sitting posture
- The lower legs and knees take more pressure
- The back is not burdened in any way
Other Great Kneeling Chairs
Sturdy and comfy, this product provides the right support for your back. It comes with thick four inch cushions that pad the knees while you sit back. The height can be adjusted and there are various options to choose from. It does take a few minutes to assemble and this may require some patience on the part of the user. Some people have complained about the wheels, which are only able to move backward and forward but not side to side.
This product comes in an appealing natural wood frame finish and has black cushions to sit on. The padded seat and knee rest is made of fire retardant foam and is quite thick. The chair has been put together according to ergonomic requirements and it is possible to adjust the height. In terms of price, it compares well to competitors and comes in lower than most similar products.
This product has several advantages and disadvantages. On the one hand, it is affordable and basic but providing exactly the comfort needed in a kneeling chair. On the other hand, some users have complained about the product not measuring up to their expectations. It is on the smaller side so bigger and taller people may not find it adequate.
This product has a sleek look but with wonderful back support. It is ideal for the office or any kind of desk work. It can also take up to 250 lbs. Nice features include the moulded foam cushion, which is softer on the knees and behind. Also comes with two sets of wheels, both for rolling and locked positions. It is also possible to adjust the height. The only drawback on this product is the price, which is a bit higher than other products.
Kneeling chairs are a good alternative to conventional office chairs. For people with back problems or who are recovering from injury or surgery, such a product can be a life saver.
Getting a kneeling chair ensures that you sit properly, with correct posture, which eliminates pain and discomfort. Many users swear by their kneeling chairs and say they would not go back to a traditional chair. Try one today – you won’t be sorry.
Kneeling Chairs Vs Yoga Balls
Now that I’ve hyped up the advantages of using a kneeling chair, let’s compare and contrast it with the ever-growingly popular yoga ball chair.
The original intentions of having a yoga ball chair in the workplace include having:
- Abdominal workout while sitting at your desk
- Strengthening the core in order to stabilize the back muscles and overall posture
- To have an available seat that provides joint stimulation and mobility in sitting.
Here are some reasons for why the benefits of a yoga ball chair differ from a kneeling chair:
Core stability versus core workout
The kneeling chair provides a user with a particular position that stabilizes the core muscles. A yoga ball chair offers a continual workout while the user is sitting on the ball. The seat is rounded, rubbery, and squishy which causes automatic instability to a person’s sitting position which forces their body to contract muscles and to compensate into an upright position.
Mobility versus static sitting
A yoga ball chair is designed to produce movement while sitting, whether it’s intentional on the user’s part or not. The user has to constantly adjust in order to not tumble off of the ball. A kneeling chair is just a framework for motionless sitting.
Spinal and pelvic support
As mentioned earlier, research shows that the kneeling chair provides excellent support for the spine and for the hips. In a way, a yoga ball chair can accomplish the same thing. However, a yoga ball will have the spine and hips constantly moving which provides a greater workout but can also cause fatigue. Additionally, individuals who are at high risk for subluxation or joint dislocation in the hips and spine should probably avoid using the yoga ball chair for the instability reasons.
Which is better?
As cliché as the answer is, a resounding “it depends” statement is the most accurate. In the end, it really depends on what the user’s goals are. If the user is looking for mobility and a silent workout while at a desk, then a yoga ball chair would be the right decision. If the user would like an unorthodox office chair that provides static postural and hip stability, then a kneeling chair would be the way to go.
How To Kneel Properly
Although kneeling chairs come with unique benefits that standard chairs can’t offer, it is essential for the user to do their part and to apply these items correctly. Please consider the following when you have decided to apply a kneeling chair to your work area:
Angle adjustments for your legs
Play with the chair and the adjustment options. Observe where your weight distribution goes. Is there more pressure on your thighs, on your buttocks, or on your knees?
The goal of a healthy seated position in a kneeling chair is to place most of your weight over your thighs. The quadriceps muscles in your thighs are huge and are better designed to take weight instead of your back muscles and knee caps.
Too much pressure on your knees, especially in women, can lead to circulation issues and can cause light-headedness or fainting spells.
Back support or no back support?
Many off the kneeling chairs on the market do not come with a back support, and in many instances that is a fine set-up given the mechanisms of the chair.
However, some users may prefer having the option to occasionally lean back for a stretch without tumbling off of the chair.
Arm rests or no arm rests?
Kneeling chairs with no arm rests may be better suited for users who already have a strong, healthy core who can maintain great sitting balance without external supports.
For persons who think they will have trouble getting on and off the chair with just their feet or who feel nervous about sitting for long periods with no side guards, arm rests may put you at ease.
Height adjustment of the desk and the monitor
While adjusting the angle and the height of the chair, make sure you consider adjusting the height of your desk and your computer monitor. You want the height of all objects to match in such a way that still promotes an upright posture.
Purposeful stretching breaks
Kneeling chairs are not a substitute for regular movement. Although a user may be able to sit longer at a desk with fewer complications, it is still critical to get up every once in a while.
This will increase blood flow and to nurture those joints throughout your whole body.