The History and Features of the Ergonomic Aeron Chair

Office chairs can be found in a number of places, such as the work office, call centers, cubicles, and home offices. Because many people have to spend an extended amount of time in their office chairs for certain jobs, it became a goal for the company of Herman Miller to create an ergonomic, comfortable office chair. Probably the most widely known and recognized office chair, Herman Miller has created the Aeron chair.

What Are Ergonomics?

Ergonomics is the study of human capabilities and the work demands and conditions they are faced with on the job. The purpose of ergonomics is to reduce work related injuries and illnesses from repetitive, forceful, or prolonged exertions, such as from awkward postures, heavy lifting, pushing, or pulling. The three basic principles of successful ergonomics are: the ability to shift to multiple, but healthy and safe postures during work activities, when muscular force is exerted it is able to be done from the largest, most appropriate muscle groups, and the ability to keep joints in the midpoint of their range, particularly in the head, trunk, and upper limbs of the body. It is difficult for a person to be able to have the proper and body awareness needed to meet these requirements without proper training of certain techniques such as the Alexander technique, or from having assistance from the equipment they work with on a daily basis.

History of the Chair

The company of Herman Miller is an office and residential furniture company established in 1923. The company hired the design talents of Don Chadwick and Bill Stumpf, originally for the design of chairs for the elderly. They took the design ideas from the original project to turn them towards the more in demand market of office chairs, producing the Aeron chair in 1994. The chair was designed toward ergonomics to promote the health of the person sitting in it, to move and adjust simply, to support any sitting position, and to fit any size of person. The chair also turned out to be environmentally friendly, with a modern, sleek design. These qualities won it a spot in the New York Museum of Modern Art’s permanent collection.

Unique Features

The Aeron chair has a number of interesting qualities and features, some patented especially to it alone. The chair does not have padded foam, but instead has a patented, pellicle mesh designed to conform to a person’s shape to evenly distribute weight, thus eliminating pressure points. Foam has been shown to increase the skin’s temperature by 20 percent, whereas the pellicle mesh allows air flow to keep the sitter cooler. It features a pneumatic lift that adjusts the chair height with compressed air. The Kine mat tilt is designed to allow the chair to pivot naturally and easily with a person’s movement, and the tilt tension controls how much resistance is felt in the tilting. There are a number of optional features that can be added as well, such as adjustable arms, adjustable lumbar pads, a tilt limiter, and forward tilt. Posture fit is made to support the natural forward tilt of a person’s pelvis, allowing the spine to stay aligned. The chair can come in a variety of neutral colors and has several weave pattern options. It is made from two thirds recyclable material, and is 94 percent recyclable itself making it a green option for any office.

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