So, you’ve decided that you want to invest in a premium office chair but you are unsure of which model to choose. You’ve heard good things about the Leap chair but the Embody also sounds interesting. How do you know whether the Leap or Embody is the right chair for you? This can be tough unless you have the right resources to help you understand the differences. That’s where we come in. We have both chairs in our office and have extensive experience with each model. In this comparison, we will highlight what separates the Leap and Embody, which will ultimately allow you to decide if one of these chairs is the best pick for you.
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Leap vs. Embody Links
– Return Policy and Warranty
– Shipping and Assembly
– Build Quality
– Scope of Users
– Seat Comfort
– Back Support
– Armrest Comfort
– Ergonomic Adjustments
– Upholstery Options
– Bottom Line
|Country or Origin||Mexico||USA|
|Overall Dimensions||24.75”D x 27”W x 38.5”-43.5” H||29.5”W x 26.5”D x 42-45”H|
|Seat Height Range||16” – 20.5”||16” – 20.5”|
|Base Dimensions||26.5” Diameter||26.5” Diameter|
|Seat Dimensions||19.25”W x 15.75”-18.75”D||21.25”W x 15”-18”D|
|Back Dimensions||18”W x 23.5”H||14”W x 23.5”H|
|Distance Between Arms||12.75 – 20”||11.5 – 21”|
|Arm Height from Seat||7” – 11”||4” – 8.75”|
|Weight Capacity||400 lbs.||300 lbs.|
|Chair Weight||45 lbs.||51 lbs.|
|Shipping Weight||64 lbs.||63 lbs.|
|Shipping Dimensions||24.8” x 27” x 43.2”||40.5” x 28.5” x 28”|
The Leap and Embody are both higher priced chairs but the Embody is quite a bit more expensive than the Leap when they are similarly equipped. The Leap starts at a lower price of $842.00, because Steelcase offers the base model with no arms. The base model of the Embody includes fully adjustable arms and costs $1395.00. When the Leap is equipped with fully adjustable arms, it comes in at a current price of $1,036.00. It is about $350 less than the Embody.
Both chairs are available with caster upgrades and they each have optional upholstery upgrades as well. We will go more in-depth on the upholstery and finish in their own sections below. The Leap is available in leather, while the Embody is not. This makes the top end price on the Leap $1,757.00, with all upgrades selected. The top end price on the Embody is $1920.00.
|Add Height Adjustable Arms||$132.00||N/A|
|Add Fully Adjustable Arms||$194.00||Included|
|Soft Casters for Hard Surfaces||$18.00||$40.00|
Steelcase and Herman Miller both have great return policies. They each give you 30 days to use their chair for a full refund. Both companies will cover the return shipping charges. Steelcase requires that the Leap is returned in the original packaging and in new condition. Herman Miller also requires that the Embody is returned in new condition but they will work with you to facilitate a return if you don’t have the box it came in.
Steelcase offers a really solid warranty on the Leap. The frame is covered for a lifetime and the rest of the chair is covered for 12 years. The warranty is valid for 24/7 usage and for people weighing up to 400 lbs. Steelcase will repair or replace your chair with a current comparable model. Any shipping charges associated with repairs or replacement will be covered by Steelcase. If a repair or replacement is not possible, then Steelcase will give you a credit for the chair.
Herman Miller also offers a great warranty on the Embody. The entire chair is covered for 12 years. This applies to people weighing up to 300 lbs. and can also be used around the clock in 24/7 areas. Herman Miller will repair your Embody and cover the shipping costs required. If you live close enough to an authorized dealer, Herman Miller will perform repairs on-site.
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Shipping & Assembly
Both chairs arrive via ground carrier so they will be brought to your door. Both chairs arrive in a large box that weighs almost 65 lbs. You may want someone available to help you with the box. There will be no assembly required on either chair. You can simply open the box, remove some plastic protectors and the chairs are ready for use.
One thing to keep in mind is that not all sellers will ship the Embody and Leap chair fully assembled. There are some sellers, like Amazon, that will ship their chairs knocked down and they will require assembly. This will also be the case for people selling used or refurbished chairs. If having your chair arrive fully assembled is important to you, make sure to check with the seller prior to purchase.
Herman Miller and Steelcase did fantastic jobs with building the Embody and Leap. They both placed in the top three for the best build qualities we have seen on an office chair. The Embody has high-end components throughout the chair. The parts fit together nicely and the chair has a very sleek look overall. The chair utilizes technology that is only found on the Embody.
The Leap is similar to the Embody with regards to its components being high-end. The chair is well built from the ground up. Every part feels like it is good quality and you will not find any parts that fit together loosely or points that wiggle. The Leap uses a fair amount of plastic but it is high-end and gives the chair nice flexibility.
Scope of Users
The Embody and Leap chair did well in our scope of users category. This is a category that allows us to evaluate how much of the population a chair model will fit properly. The Embody placed 4th with a score of 75/100 and the Leap scored 2nd with an 84/100.
The Embody has a seat height range to fit the 95th percentile of the population. The Embody also has seat depth adjustment which helps it fit a wide range of people comfortably. The Embody has a large arm height and width adjustment range. This allows the chair to work for short people, tall people, small people and large people.
The Leap chair has the same seat height adjustment range. It also has seat depth adjustment and a large arm height adjustment range. The two factors that pushed the Leap’s score past the Embody’s is the larger arm width adjustment range on the Leap and its 400 lb. weight rating compared to the 300 lb. rating on the Embody.
Seat comfort is the first of three categories that we polled our whole office to get a wide range of opinions. We then averaged the numbers to get our final score. Both chairs did well with the Leap nabbing the top score with an 85/100 and the Embody close behind with a 79/100. The seats on the Embody and Leap chair are similar because they both use a small amount of padding that provides a firm, supportive feeling, yet they go about it much differently.
The Leap features a flexible plastic seat pan and there is no outer frame on the seat. This allows you to use the entire seat comfortably and the seat will also move and bend with you as you move. The seat features a thin layer of foam but it holds its shape well and does not bottom out. This allows the seat to remain cool while also being supportive for long hours.
The Embody’s seat features a four-layer system of padding but it is still quite firm. It still remains supportive for long hours. Along with the four-layer system, the seat also has a pixelated support system. There is a grid of individual pixels under the seat that flex and provide support depending on how you move in the chair. The seat on the Embody is large and flexible, with no pronounced frame. This allows you to move freely, like the Leap chair’s seat. One drawback that we found on the Embody’s seat is that sometimes you can feel the individual pixels, which can be uncomfortable.
Back support is the second category that we used our whole office to score. With something so subjective, we wanted as many opinions as possible. Our office scored the Leap at an 82/100 and the Embody at a 75/100. The backrests on these chairs are quite a bit different so they have unique things to offer.
The backrest on the Embody features a narrow, high back design. It is meant to be shaped like your spine. The backrest has great flexibility and also features the same pixelated support system as the seat. The thin back, flexible plastic and pixelated support system really give you a wide range of motion. This allows you to stay active and loose while working.
The Embody has a nice natural lumbar curve that provides good support but there is no adjustability for the lumbar. Another potential downside with the back on the Embody is that it is curved inward. This made the backrest push some people’s shoulders forward, which is not comfortable for extended periods.
The back on the Leap chair has a more standard shape but it also gives you good flexibility to move. It is made from a thin injection molded plastic. It is strong but flexes. The Leap chair also features Steelcase’s LiveBack technology. This allows the top half of the back to move and bend while keeping the lumbar section stable to provide constant support.
The Leap’s backrest is shaped to provide automatic lumbar support, which is also adjustable. You can slide the support up and down to make sure it is placed correctly for you. You can also adjust the support in and out to make it more or less pronounced.
Armrest comfort is the final category that we scored by using our entire office. The Leap scored an 83/100, which trailed only the Steelcase Gesture. The Embody was behind a bit at a 74/100. The reason the Leap’s arms scored higher is that they are much more adjustable. The Leap’s arms have height, width, depth and pivot adjustments. Along with having 4-way capabilities, each adjustment has a large range, which really gives you a ton of different ways to position the arms.
The Embody’s arms only have height and width adjustment. The ranges are really large but not being able to adjust the arm caps limits the positions you can use them in. The arms on the Embody are comfortable though. They are large and the padding is soft. I have personally used the Embody for several weeks and find the arms to be comfortable for long hours. The same can be said for the arms on the Leap. They are also soft and comfy to use for prolonged hours at a time.
The Leap scored much higher in the ergonomic adjustments category and that is simply because it is more adjustable. Both chairs have seat height, seat depth, arm width, arm height, tilt lock and tilt tension adjustments. The Leap chair also has arm depth, arm pivot and 2-way adjustable lumbar adjustment. One function the Embody does have that the Leap doesn’t is independent back angle adjustment.
One major difference between the ergonomics on the Embody and Leap are the way the chairs recline. When you recline the Leap’s backrest, the seat slides forward but its angle remains fairly consistent. When you recline the backrest on the Embody, the seat will tilt quite a bit, which allows you to rock back and forth in the chair.
The Leap chair is more suited for tasking applications due to the way the chair reclines and its high amount of adjustability. The Embody is not as adjustable as the Leap but it still has good ergonomics and is better suited for people that want to be able to rock back and forth in their chair.
The Leap comes in a much larger variety of upholstery and color options than the Embody. The Embody is available in two different polyester fabric options, Rhythm and Balance, with a total of 10 colors to choose from. The fabric is commercial quality and has been tested to 200,000 double rubs so it is made to last a long time. If you upgrade to the Balance fabric, there is a $200 upcharge.
The Leap is available in a lot of different upholstery options, including leather. All of the upholstery options are commercial quality and have been tested to a minimum of 100,000 double rubs. Upgrading your fabric will range in price from $13-$56, while upgrading to leather will be $544.00.
The Leap is available in three different finish options. You can choose between black, platinum and polished aluminum. This is the color for the base and frame around the arms and backrest. The black is standard and comes in a matte finish. Platinum is a medium grey color and also comes in a matte finish. The platinum comes with an upcharge of $31. The polished aluminum is a high shine option for those of you that want something flashy. It comes at a cost of $323.
The frame and base on the Embody are available in several color combinations. The frame is basically going to constitute everything except the base, cylinder and upholstery. You can mix graphite, white, titanium and polished aluminum. Depending on the combination you select, the price could go up anywhere from $25.00 – $440.00.
While the Leap and Embody are among the best ergonomic chairs on the market, they are going to offer much different sitting experiences. The Leap has a more traditional seat and back padding while the Embody has an intricate pixelated support system. The Leap is the more adjustable option and also scored quite a bit better for back comfort due to its lumbar support. The Embody, on the other hand, is better for those of you that want a high back or for people that want a more fluid rocking motion.
Your decision may also come down to price or upholstery preference. The Embody is priced quite a bit higher than the Leap when they are similarly configured. The Leap is also the choice for those of you that want leather since the Embody is available in fabric only.
The factors that are most important for you will be what dictates whether one of these chairs is a good fit for your needs. Will the Embody or Leap be your best choice? Only you can make that decision, but hopefully this comparison has made it easy.
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