Finding the best office chair, that will help reduce lower back pain, is a quest for many office workers. While most office seating companies claim to have lumbar support, they almost always lack in this area.
While you may find other lists on the internet, almost all of them will be built to push you into Amazon products. It’s important to note that most, if not all of these websites, have never tried the chairs they promote. As someone who has sat in hundreds of chairs, I know there is no way you could ever know what chair is excellent or bad without sitting in each first hand.
Chairs that offer better lower back support do exist, and today we will take a closer look at the ones we have found to provide the best lumbar support. I will show you chairs that are available at different price points so that no matter your budget is, you can start to work more comfortably.
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Best Office Chairs For Lower Back Pain
- Ergohuman LE9ERG – 82/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Eurotech Vera – 81/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Humanscale Diffrient Smart – 80/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Steelcase Leap – 80/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Humanscale Freedom – 79/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Herman Miller Aeron – 79/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Herman Miller Cosm – 79/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Eurotech iOO – 78/100 Rating For Back Pain
- Humanscale Liberty – 77/100 Rating For Back Pain
- 5 Things To Consider
- Bottom Line
The Best Office Chair For Lower Back Pain List
1. Ergohuman LE9ERG Office Chair – 82/100 Rating
The highest-ranked chair in our list for lower back pain, the Ergohuman LE9ERG, scored 82/100 overall. Just looking at the design of the lower lumbar region on the LE9ERG is impressive. Naturally protruding beyond the upper backrest, the lumbar support system is the first part of the backrest to make contact with your back.
The backrest on the LE9ERG is height adjustable, allowing you to move the lumbar support on your back. The design of it also allows for it to be automatically depth adjustable, based on the user’s weight and how much you push into the backrest. Additionally, there is some flexibility with how it moves with you as you twist and move around in the chair.
If you tend to lean forward while tasking, the lower support of the LE9ERG stays with you even if you cheat forward. This feature is perfect if you prefer not to lean back in the chair unless you’re on a call or browsing the internet.
Because of the design of the lumbar and upholstery, the support is very specific on the LE9ERG. It doesn’t spread across your lower back as a mesh alternative would. This is important because some users may not like that feeling. If you’re looking for a little less pronounced lumbar support, the ME7ERG Ergohuman does a better job at flexing and spreading the support through the lower back.
When you lean back in the LE9ERG, the motion of the chair will pull the lumbar support up your back some. At about 50 perfect recline, I noticed the support became less pronounced, but it was still good. Depending on the position of the lumbar to start, it could require you to lower it down your back for the right support.
2. Eurotech Vera Mesh Chair – 81/100 Rating
The second-ranked chair, the Eurotech Vera, was featured in our best overall back support post. Featuring the most comfortable backrest in a chair we’ve tested, Vera is also very good with lower support. With a score of 81 out of 100, the Vera managed to score well without a separate lumbar support system.
One of the things you first notice about the Vera is how perfectly upright the backrest positions your body. This allows you to comfortably scoot back into the chair and lets the natural curve of the backrest push against your lower back. Because of the mesh design, the support is spread out across the lower half of your back.
When upright, the Vera has medium to medium-strong lower support. As you recline in the chair, the lower support will start to diminish, with full recline offering minimal lower support.
Because of the upright nature of the backrest, the Vera does provide excellent lower back support when leaned slightly forward for tasking. Because the natural curve of the backrest only pushes so far forward, you need to make sure to scoot your butt back into the chair for excellent lower support.
3. Humanscale Diffrient Smart Chair – 80/100 Rating
The Humanscale Diffrient Smart chair is our third ranked chair in the lower back support list, with a score of 80 out of 100. Like the Vera, the Diffrient doesn’t have an adjustable lumbar support system, but it does have a unique pivoting backrest design. We found through testing that the Smart chair has medium support when seated upright.
The design of the Diffrient Smart allows you to sit nice and upright in the chair for tasking. This provides good lower support for these tasks as well. Like the Vera, you will need to push yourself back into the chair to experience the best support.
Where the Diffrient Smart shines is when you begin to lean back into the chair. As you do this, the backrest naturally pivots, with the lower portion of the back pushing harder into your back. From 25 to 100 perfect of recline in Diffrient, the lower support moves from medium to medium-strong to strong.
4. Steelcase Leap Ergonomic Chair – 80/100 Rating
Our fourth-ranked chair, the Steelcase Leap, technically tied the Humanscale Diffrient Smart with a score of 80 out of 100. While these two chairs scored the same for lower support, they couldn’t be more different. With a more traditional padded upholstered backrest, the Leap was still able to offer medium to medium-strong support, depending on how you configured the lumbar system.
With Leaps intuitive lumbar support system, you can make precise adjustments to how much and where you want your support. The height-adjustable lumbar support allows you to move the pressure up and down your back.There is also a lumbar tension system, which will increase or decrease the curve in the backrest. Depending on how you adjust this it will change how pronounced the lumbar support feels.
If you like to recline in your office chair, the Leap is a good option with up to about a 50 percent recline. Beyond this point, you begin to lose some of the medium to medium-strong support in the lower region of the backrest. Unlike the Vera, at 100 perfect, the Leap does still provide light to potentially medium support in the lower lumbar region.
5. Humanscale Freedom Ergonomic Chair – 79/100 Rating
Our fifth-ranked chair, Humanscale Freedom, came in with a score of 79 out of 100. This is the second chair from Humanscale to make it onto this list. After testing four different models from Humanscale, it is clear they have paid attention to providing excellent back support with their seating.
The Freedom Chair offers medium to medium-strong support when seated upright. The backrest is also height adjustable, which allows you to fine-tune where you like the most support. In addition to the height adjustment, there is a pivoting function as well.
As you move in the chair, the lumbar stays with you, creating consistent lower support. I found that I enjoyed the Freedom most when at the mid recline position. The lower support was medium to medium-strong throughout the entire recline. For those that enjoy working in a reclined position, the Freedom is best when paired with the headrest.
6. Herman Miller Aeron Task Chair – 79/100 Rating
Likely the most recognizable chair in our list, the Herman Miller Aeron came in at number 6, with a solid score of 79 out of 100. The model we tested included the PostureFit SL, which is the best lumbar support add-on available for the Aeron. This is very important if you’re interested in purchasing an Aeron and want excellent lower support.
The Aeron offers medium lower support when in the upright tasking position. One added feature that isn’t common with most chairs is the ability to the chair in a forward tilt position. This is a useful feature for those who really like to sit forward and task. It isn’t for everyone since it gives the feeling of falling from the chair and requires you to engage your legs more than a traditional seated position.
Arguably one of the best features of the Aeron is the fluid tilt function that keeps your feet planted to the floor, and the backrest in perfect unison with your back. As you recline in the Aeron, the support felt when seated upright remains the same. Users that enjoyed the lower support when seated upright will get the same experience, no matter what reclined position they choose to work in.
7. Herman Miller Cosm – 79/100 Rating
Right behind the Aeron, is the newest Herman Miller product we’ve reviewed, the Cosm chair. While I’m a bit hesitant to suggest this chair for tasking, it did receive enough points to rank at number seven overall, with a score of 79 out of 100. If you decide to purchase this chair for tasking, we would highly recommend looking at the adjustable task arm option.
The Cosm offers a unique feel when you sit in it, with an almost floating hammock feel. The mesh on our new chair is supportive enough to provide good lower support when you are pushed back into the seat and backrest. The design of the backrest, without an adjustable lumbar system, spreads nicely throughout your lower back.
The Cosm is also one of the chairs that we tasked that gets better as you recline back into it. We found the best support, which rated at medium-strong, was felt from about 50 to 100 percent recline. With the tall backrest design, it is a good option for those who like to work in a reclined position.
8. Eurotech iOO – 78/100 Rating
Eighth on our list is the Eurotech iOO chair, with a score of 78 out of 100. At first glance, the iOO is easily mistaken for the Ergohuman series, with similar features throughout. With a pronounced lower lumbar region, the iOO offers a similar feel as the mesh series from Eurotech’s Ergohuman series.
When seated in an upright position, the iOO has a medium to medium-strong lower support. Like the Ergohuman series, the lumbar system protrudes beyond the upper portion of the backrest, hitting your lower back even when sitting slightly forward in the chair. The mesh upholstery does a better job of spreading throughout the lower back than the LE9ERG, featured at number one on our list. If you are looking for a wider range of lower support, this could be a better option.
The lumbar support is also height adjustable, which allows you to fine-tune where it provides the most support. As you recline in the chair, the support remains fairly consistent, with medium support even when in a fully reclined position. The motion of the recline allows for the lumbar support to move minimally, offering more consistent support for the lumbar region than that of the Ergohuman series.
9. Humanscale Liberty – 77/100 Rating
The final product on our list, the Humanscale Liberty chair, is the third Humanscale product to be featured on our list. With a score of 77 out of 100, the Liberty features a similar back design and function as the Diffrient Smart chair.
When seated in the upright position, the Liberty chair offers medium to medium-strong lower support. Like the Diffrient Smart, the initial pivot, when arching your back and slightly reclining, increased the lower support.
The biggest difference between the Liberty and Diffrient Smart was that once you reclined beyond 50 perfect, the Liberty only had light lower support. If you’re looking for a mesh back chair with a lot of lower support while reclined, I would suggest looking at the other Humanscale chairs on the list.
Top 5 Things To Consider When Buying Office Chairs For Lower Back Pain
Before you make a decision on your next office chair to relieve your lower back pain, it’s important you consider these top five things first.
1. How you sit in your chair while you task
Not all users task the same way. While some work in perfect posture with their back up against the chair, others tend to slouch. Maybe you like to lean to the side when you type. It’s essential to understand how you like to sit when finding the perfect office chair.
One of the most significant issues we’ve seen is that customers try to adapt to an office chair. This is the quickest way to failure, as most habits can be hard to break. Some sitting habits aren’t bad, and the expectation that you sit perfectly for long hours throughout the day is unrealistic. Finding a chair that provides proper support for the way you sit, is likely to improve your support while seated.
2. Does the chair offer good support while reclined?
Do you like to recline in your chair? Is this something that you spend a lot of time doing? If you are taking a lot of phone calls, in meetings or even working from this position, proper support while reclined can be important if you have lower back issues.
Just because a chair offers great support while you’re sitting upright, doesn’t automatically mean that you will see the same support when reclined. We’ve found through testing all of the chairs in our office, there can be significant differences in lower support as you recline back into the chair.
Depending on how the recline function moves on your chair, the lower support can change in various ways. Whether it’s diminishing support or that the support actually moves up the back, both can have a significant impact on your lower back pain.
3. Is the lumbar support height and depth adjustable?
While not always true, having a lumbar support system that is height and depth adjustable can be important. If the lumbar support system doesn’t provide a good fit for your body, you will need the ability to move it up and down your back. Having depth adjustment will allow you to add and reduce the amount of pressure applied to your back. Depending on the amount of support needed, this can be a nice feature to have.
4. Does the backrest and/or lumbar move with you in the chair?
Depending on the type of tasks you perform in your chair, you may want to consider how the backrest and lumbar moves with you. If you are doing a lot of twisting and reaching, having a backrest that moves with you and provides continuous support is good if you really need a lot of lower support.
We have seen a lot of different types of backrests that will provide this function. From the entire backrest bending and flexing, to only the lumbar support automatically adjusting in depth. If this is important to you, you’ll want to pay close attention to the back of the desk.
5. What material is the lumbar system made from?
The last thing to consider is what type of material the lumbar and backrest are made from. Certain types of materials will flex more, spreading out the support through your back. We have seen upholstered lumbar systems with padded backing that can feel more stiff and will focus more on a certain area. Depending on your needs, this type of focused support can be good or bad. This is especially true if you’re able to fine tune where you can place the support.
Depending on the amount of support you require and where you need it most, finding a chair with excellent lower back support is always a good idea. Each chair in our list offers, at a minimum, excellent lower back support for long hours of tasking. If you’re interested in reclining, the list shrinks somewhat. Finding how much support you need, where you need it most, and what type of material to have the chair upholstered in will ensure a good sitting experience. I hope this list has helped you narrow down the best choice for your lower back needs.