Thursday, March 08, 2007

What is Your Chair Like?

Okay . . . I've heard about the seating debate raging on a few email loops, but I knew the story had hit the big time when I read about it in the Wall Street Journal. According to the WSJ, the chair of choice these days isn't a chair at all . . . but a big, rubber ball. Exercise balls, usually priced at about $25, are a lot cheaper than an Aeron chair (usually over $1,000) and probably a lot more fun. Like the chair pictured here? You can get one at for $109.95.

According to the WSJ, employees at BlueSky Strategies in Toronto have races on ball chairs when they need a break.

I do tend to get up feeling stiff and creaky after a long day at the desk, but I'm not sure a ball chair is the answer. For one thing, Babe would probably try to carry it around, so it'd pop in a matter of minutes. For another, I'm afraid I'd drift off in thought and roll backward. And how am I supposed to lean back, prop my feet on the desk, and watch a video on a ball chair? Shudder. They might be fun for a while, but not for all day. Still, if it's your thing . . . go for it. And let me know how it feels. :-)



Deborah Raney said...

Angie, I've been sitting on an exercise ball instead of a desk chair since February 16, and I don't think I'll ever go back! Okay, I have fallen off of it twice...reaching for a Kleenex on the shelf behind me...but still, it is the most comfortable thing I've ever sat on, and SO easy to get up and down from. Granted, I still split my writing day between my office (on the ball), a bar stool in the kitchen, and the sofa; and later this spring I'll spend part of the morning out on the deck in a lawn chair. But I spent a recent Saturday on deadline on that ball for almost 12 hours and never got tired. I think the stands for the ball (like in your photo) would defeat a lot of the advantages of it - being able to roll and stretch, having to balance yourself, etc. And BTW, you CAN put your feet up while on the ball...maybe not on your desk, but I put mine on a footstool with no problem.

Rachelle said...

Eek! You're giving me nightmares! I actually exercise with my exercise ball and so understandably, I have an intense love/hate relationship with the thing. Well, hate mostly. Perhaps I would learn to love it if I used it to work instead of workout?

And Deb... I don't understand. Is your ball big enough that you are properly situated at your desk with your ball resting on the floor? I have short legs, hence a smaller ball... so I'd have to get a VERY low desk for that to work.

Christina Tarabochia said...

I've used a ball for the past year. Or I did...until DH sat on it and popped it. I'm 5'7". On the ball for my size, I'm at the perfect level for being at the computer. When I get stumped, I bounce. A great workout and it gets my brain working again. I do think it'd be hard to use with a laptop, though. ;-)

Anonymous said...

I have a 16 year old autistic son and he loves his ball chair. He lightly bounces on it while he works/plays on the computer and it gives him good sensory input and helps keep him calm.

Kerry Krycho said...

I have a ball and alternate between that and a desk chair. Part of it depends on how long I am sitting. I have a bad back and I actually do much better on the ball. And I do like to bounce as well when I am stuck, bored, etc.

Christina Tarabochia said...

Oh, I forgot, you all should stop by my mother's blog, for a hiliarious rendition of Balls Gone Bad. Scroll down to second entry from the bottom.

Deborah Raney said...

I'm 5'8" and the 65 cm. ball is the perfect height for my tabletop-height desk. You need to inflate it until you think it will pop. I didn't get it inflated enough at first, and it's much better super-full. I've added air to mine a couple times in the three weeks I've had it to keep it nice and firm.

Like Kerry, I love bouncing on it too, it keeps me awake and is great for thinking. You might feel a tiny bit dizzy the first day or two you use your ball as a chair, but that goes away quickly once you get your "sea legs." ; )

Now I'm headed over to read Christina's mom's story. : )