Conventional sitting is rigid sitting. Rigid sitting means tense - strained - back muscles, monotonous loading of the intervertebral discs and the weakening of the entire upright holding apparatus. This is especially dangerous for the pelvis and torso area. At the same time rigid sitting leads to fatigue and oxygen depletion in the blood, the concentration declines. Therefore doctors and therapists emphasise: "You should also move a lot when you are sitting“. This is possible with active chairs that encourage frequent position and posture changes.
Why the so-called multi-dimensional sitting concepts are so good for the back is shown by taking a closer look at the anatomy: Our spinal column is an unstable tower out of 24 stacked up vertebral bodies, held together by numerous muscles. They form a network of thin muscle bands that hold all vertebral bodies together criss-cross. Thereby a special role is played by the so-called autochthonous muscles (= upright raising and stabilising muscles of the vertebral column), which continually balance our body without us noticing it.
These supporting bands always work in tandem: While one muscle strand is pulling, its counterpart slowly releases - and vice versa. This complicated system can however only function optimally when all muscle players are sturdy and equally strong. Otherwise only the strong ones are active and the weak ones drop out.
Today it is known: Autochthonous muscles that are too weak are one of the main causes for back complaints. But exactly these so important small muscles can be optimally trained through multi-dimensional sitting. Quite casually, during work. Further advantage: The chair adapts to the movements of the sitting person, the back always remains upright, even when one inclines towards the table. This not only prevents back problems, but promotes the nutrition of the intervertebral discs, relieves the organs, stimulates the circulation and thereby also increases the performance ability, the concentration and the mood.
Children on average spend ten hours a day - including free time - sitting. Thereby important movement impulses are especially lacking for the growing organism, which are indispensable for a balanced physical, intellectual and psychical development. Principally noteworthy: The more frequently growing children undertake diverse movements the better this is for their complex development processes. A good reason to already be aware of movement promoting furniture during childhood. Active chairs are not only available for adults, but also for children. They must fulfil the same criteria, adapted to the body height.
The active chairs certified today are conceived for different application purposes and differ in the sitting comfort and in the adjustment possibilities.
Similar to active office chairs, active chairs also have movement mechanisms that allow intuitive, multi-dimensional sitting behaviour. Active chairs are used at the office, as well as at the home workplace. They are however not consistent with the requirements of DIN EN 1335 for office furniture. But this however also includes a critical perspective. DIN EN 1335 is based on a draft from the year 1989 (DIN 4551), and due to "outdated“ regulations excludes many innovative and meanwhile empirically proven physiological sitting concepts for the office application. The company management is principally not under obligation to observe DIN EN 1335 in the selection of the working equipment. The standard is merely applicable as recommendation, respectively as minimum requirement for the protection of employees. The health and the continuous performance ability of the employees should however stand in the foreground in the selection of the right sitting object - and not the standard! A responsible employer should therefore not force an employee to sit on a DIN conforming office chair, who when sitting on a conventional office chair according to DIN EN 1335 gets back pain, and whose health situation however improves when sitting on a non DIN-conforming sitting object.
The AGR has meanwhile certified many height adjustable active chairs that do not have any DIN EN 1335 conformity. Based on the following reasons these active chairs for office as well as for home workplaces are recommended as being back friendly.
Hans-Stießberger-Straße 2a, 3. OG
85540 Haar b. München
Tel. +49 89/90 05 06 0
Fax +49 89/90 39 39 1
Haider Bioswing GmbH**
Dechantseeser Str. 4
Tel. +49 9234/99 22 0
Fax +49 9234/99 22 166
Moizi Möbel GmbH***
Warburger Str. 37
Tel. +49 5272/37 15 0
Fax +49 5272/37 15 23
VS Vereinigte Spezialmöbelfabriken GmbH & Co****
Hochhäuser Str. 8
Tel. +49 9341/88 77 70
Fax +49 9341/88 77 77
For all those who want more movement but don't want to sit on an active chair all the time, it has proven effective to offer the chance to alternate between a "traditional" chair and mobile active sitting furniture.