Many people start out playing games just sitting in their couch or recliner, or a simple office desk chair. For those people, it may seem weird to spend extra money for a gaming chair when they are already comfortable with their current setup.
If you are wondering if gaming chairs make a difference, here are a few things to consider:
- Office chairs are often designed to look good and professional in an office environment, and aren't really designed to be physically comfortable
- Office chairs are designed to hold a person at a task or desk height, where they may be typing, clicking, writing, talking on the phone, and other office tasks. They aren't designed for hour after hour of repetitive motion
- Living room furniture like couches and recliners are designed to be soft and cushioned, and don't provide the sturdy support that your spine needs when gaming
- Living room furniture often has your head positioned at a sub-optimal eye angle for gaming, requiring you to tilt your head in an uncomfortable way
- Your body wasn't really designed for hour after hour of repetitive motion either. Prolonged sitting can be bad for your spine and neck, and your circulation. Extended gaming can also take a toll on the eyes and wrists
So there are some very good reasons to consider getting a gaming chair.
Features of Gaming Chairs
Gaming chairs are typically designed with high backs that have built in support for the shoulders, neck, and head.
Many gaming chairs have built-in speakers for more immersive audio experience.
Adjustable arms, tilt, back, height, etc.
Having a lot of ways to adjust a chair allows you to make it fits your body for maximum comfort.
Speaking of comfort, gaming chairs are designed for long-term comfort over hours and years of use.
Many gaming chairs have high-density foam or cushions that are designed to stay soft and supportive over long periods of use.
Most gaming chairs come with some form of support for your lower back.
Benefits of Gaming Chairs
All of these specific features add up to ways that gaming chairs can benefit your gameplay.
A high back offers support for the shoulders, neck, and head
This is particularly useful if your typical gaming posture is a reclined position, because it reduces strain and fatigue in the neck and shoulders.
Audio is a crucial game experience, not just for setting the mood and enhancing the story, but also often for helping to guide your decisions and provide crucial information. Good sound also helps you stay more focused and engaged in game play, which can provide a competitive edge.
It happens all too often that we feel comfortable when we first sit down, but then over time need to keep shifting and moving to adjust our position and get more comfortable. The ability to adjust a chair to the precise angles, heights, and relationships that work best for your body helps to eliminate this ongoing distraction.
High density cushioning preserves the overall life and durability of a chair, so that it remains as supportive and comfortable after a year of use as it was when you got it.
Gaming is hard on the lower back, and the proper support in the back promotes better circulation and reduces wear on the spine.
Overall comfort is basically just a measure of how good your body feels in the chair, but it's the opposite of discomfort, which can be distracting and reduce your game time.
Do Gaming Chairs Make a Difference?
The short answer is yes and no. If you don't game often, don't game for long sessions at once, or prefer casual games where reaction time and concentration aren't factors, and you are basically comfortable in your existing seating, then no, you are unlikely to notice any difference with a gaming chair.
However, if you play often, play for prolonged periods in one sitting, and need your concentration and reaction times to be as sharp as they can be, then yes, a gaming chair is likely to make a difference and give your game play a slight competitive edge. For professionals who want to avoid any unnecessary distractions, and for whom a cramp or muscle spasm can mean disaster, a gaming chair is the only way to go.