ARE GAMING CHAIRS WORTH IT? Do I Really Need One?
WHAT WE COVER
- should you buy a gaming chair?
- What injuries can you encounter whilst online gaming?
- Why an ergonomic chair is your best option
- Choosing the right sized chair
- Always choose quality products
- Ensure it is adjustable to fit your needs
- Look for multi-point support
- Go for a classic design that has lasted the test of time
- Your gaming setup should be fairly priced
- Wrapping it all up - Conclusion
The short answer is: if you want to impress your Discord buddies with the latest, racing-style gaming chair and the aesthetics of a chair count more than its features, then a gaming chair is for you. But, if you're considering long-term comfort, adjustable features on nearly every aspect of the chair, high-quality construction, and even higher quality comfort, then an ergonomic office chair is your best bet. We delve into why these two differ so radically in the article below.
While desk jobs might not require you to manoeuvre across a colossal 55-inch monitor as you do while playing video games, there’s a thin line between having fun and being in serious pain. Your need for comfortable sitting coupled with spontaneous movement is compounded if your gaming setup is a dual monitor setup.
In recent years, e-sports and gaming have gone from a lively niche to a core mode of entertainment in the world. While e-sports may have been part of the larger sports industry once, they have become a complete market unto itself.
This transition was motivated by a growing amount of coverage from the mainstream networks, such as ESPN. Some of it was also a result of the game, Fortnite's, frenetic growth. Fortnite is a survival game where 100 players compete against each other in a multiplayer battle to be the lone survivor. It's a high-speed, exhilarating game where tactical thinking is a must in order to survive. Fortnite has a record 125 million players.
As video gaming becomes entrenched in mainstream culture, major advertisers, companies, major news outlets and customers all pay attention to any related products. More people are engaging with video game content, meaning they need the correct gaming furniture and equipment to play. According to Business Insider Intelligence projections, the total e-sport market is forecast to increase by an annual compound growth rate (CAGR) of 9% from 2019 to 2023 to 646 million in 2019. This places the audience at almost double over a six-year period, with a record of 335 million in 2017.
With so many people playing games online across the world, the real-world dynamics involved in gameplay become important. If you are sitting for hours on end, you need a comfortable game chair, ergonomically designed to keep your posture correct. If you sit in any old chair, you risk repetitive strain injuries associated with prolonged computer use.
Sitting for extended periods of time can cause numerous injuries for online gamers. Most of these injuries are related to bad posture and increased pressure on intervertebral discs. This can lead to spinal degeneration or damage to nerves and blood vessels related to the spine. You can also damage your hip and shoulder muscles which could make you walk improperly. These are the injuries which lead to lower back pain while gaming or upper back pain when people hunch their shoulders forward.
Repetitive strain injuries in the form of elbow, wrist, and hand injuries are common. By using a controller, keyboard, and mouse, you can cause injuries such as overuse tendinosis or tenosynovitis. These will usually present as slight or sometimes sharp wrist pain while gaming, especially if the game involves intricate controller movements or repeated, comparable use of the mouse.
- Nerve impingements happen when you 'pinch' a nerve by applying too much pressure on it or the surrounding tissue such as bone, tendons, cartilage, or muscles. Commonly affected nerves are the median nerve of the wrist, the ulnar nerve of the elbow, and the brachial plexus under your clavicle.
As mentioned, when you spend long hours sitting at a desk, your posture can have an impact on the way your back feels. All online gamers or console gamers experience this – some more than others. This is worse for those who spend a lot of time playing video games that require large amounts of upper body movement while remaining seated.
What are some things you can do to make sure to avoid aches and pains during your gameplay? There are some features that are built into most ergonomic gaming chairs so you can get an ideal sitting position almost every time.
There are 6 basic tenets of ergonomic office chairs which make it ideal for sitting for long stretches while you immerse yourself in online gaming worlds, related YouTube videos, or get pwned on Discord. These are explained further in the article.
- Office chairs are constructed for even weight distribution and support.
- The materials used to make office chairs for gaming are of a high-quality and last long.
- Nearly every aspect of the chair is adjustable, from armrests, to seat-depth, tension control, to headrests – you can maximise the adjustability to suit you.
- Ergonomic office chairs are made to a part of a multi-point gaming station ecosystem, including all your other ergonomic equipment like keyboards, control pads, and screens.
- Each chair is designed to look sleek and aesthetically pleasing, no matter your gaming setup. Unlike the bold and bright colours of racing-style gaming chairs which can be incongruous with your room décor.
- When added to the price of your entire gaming setup, office chairs are priced fairly for all the features and longevity they give you.
Make sure that you buy a gaming chair that’s appropriate for your needs. Chair seats are the primary body weight carriers when you are sitting down. But the more you recline, the weight is transferred to the backrest. An ergonomic chair for gaming has something called a 'tilt range' and kinematics, which refer to the chairs ability to imitate the body's natural pivot points and transfer weight to the backrest. These are the factors that affect how far you can recline. Comfort Design chairs come with height adjustments, and different capabilities in terms of how much body weight they can support.
Buying your gaming chair from a company that knows the dynamics and science behind ergonomics will save you time and assist your posture. There are various body types using such chairs, and it is important to get one specific to you. This distributes weight away from your spine and keeps you comfortable. When designed to provide support for a wide variety of weights and dimensions, a topographically neutral seat and backrest ensure that people receive the benefits of finely adjusted pressure distribution.
Everyone has a different type of comfort level when it comes to their seat. For instance, one gamer might be scared to use something that is too soft, while another might feel that anything too firm is going to cut into their back. Many gamers need just enough padding that their shoulders are still moving slightly back and forth. This requires a seat that feels firm but is still soft enough for comfort.
For the best sitting experience, make sure that the seat is properly supportive while allowing you to maintain good posture and stay relaxed. The company where you are getting the chair can advise you on the different materials on offer. Some materials might be better for the backrest, while others are better suited to the chair seat. You will need to do a bit of research to find the right solution. You need to make sure whichever materials the chair is made of will withstand environmental damage as well, such as spilled coffee or Red Bull. This means you should look for gaming chairs that have a fair warranty, in case of any blatant structural or quality-related failures.
You should not hold your body too rigidly while playing. You want to move a little but not too much. Your chair should have some flexibility in the seat and backrest to allow you to move from side to side, and back to front. You should also be able to adjust the armrests, the seat depth, the chair height, and the height of the headrest. The best gaming chair can provide all of these benefits if bought from a company that is reputable and is known for selling high-quality chairs for gaming.
The best ergonomic gaming stations offer a lot of solid comfort to begin with, so what makes the chair aspect stand out? It's because in terms of comfort and features, chairs provide you with a combination of things.
Since you are a gamer and not a gymnast, you probably think you do not need much to support your back or arms. In fact, what you often need is a seat with three main points of support: the back, the seat itself, and a headrest. These three points of support allow you to be comfortable without your body carrying most of the strain of sitting.
A multi-point ergonomic pc gaming station does not only refer to the chair. A well-designed keyboard and mouse are the first steps you can take to improve your posture and comfort while playing your favourite games. This is because they tend to be cheaper and can be found almost anywhere online, and in brick-and-mortar stores. Most gaming peripherals offer various functional design features such as curved interfaces, extra buttons, and wireless connectivity to make online gaming easier. Aim for a reduced footprint keyboard on your pc gaming desk and extras like programmable function keys, making it ideal for both professional and amateur gamers.
Another important thing to consider is the design and shape of the chair. Many of today’s game chairs have a sportier, racing-inspired design even if you are only sitting at a desk. What you pay for in looks should be matched in performance and user-friendly features. Many new designs are too futuristic, which makes them look a bit out of place in a modern office setting. But since most people game at home and there is the added remote working push introduced by COVID-19, investing in a gaming chair right now is a good idea.
Ultimately, what makes a gaming setup look cool? Is it the LED lights on the keyboard, or size of the monitor, or the colour of the fabric on your chair? The answer is neither. A really cool video game station looks that way because of practicality and features. You need a combination of high-quality, comfortable equipment that will allow you to interface with your game worlds as easily as possible. Imagine having all those upgrades in the game but IRL you are sitting on a dining room chair with little desk space. Your gaming experience will be restricted.
The final point is the price. In the current gaming market, you do not often find big-name video games at exceptionally low prices, especially if they’re on the PS4, Xbox One, or PC. This is notable when it comes to consoles. However, as you'll find most seating solutions are fairly priced at twice the amount of a good game. What is better with a game chair is that it's a long-term investment. The chair will still be there whether you're into Fortnite this month or whichever game was recently released. If you don't have the budget for pricey racing inspired game chairs, aim to get an entry-level ergonomic office chair that has similar comfort features. It will usually have most of the useful specs, but not the stylistic frills which make it an aesthetic purchase as well.
No two people in the world are exactly the same. We are all unique but our bodies function similarly. Sitting is something that everyone does in one way or another. Now that online gaming has grown and continues to find new fans every day, it's important that people consider the effects on their health. While there are concerns over violence in games, on the diet people choose to eat while gaming, etc, we've chosen to focus on your lumbar support and posture. It's a subject with which we are deeply concerned and always remind people about. Having the correct chair for gaming will keep your body happy and your game performance will definitely show.