Furniture Matters in Education: Why the School Chair is Crucial

School Chairs and DeskSome businesses tend to pull back on spending in a bid to save money. While clever money management is certainly essential for business success, some sectors need to invest more to get more, like the education sector.

In addition to investing in highly trained teachers, equipment and relevant materials, educational institutions in Australia also need to look into improving its school furniture; in particular, the student’s chair.

Thousands of Hours in a Chair

The Guardian reports that the average child spends about 15,000 hours sitting in school. Children spend that much time with school furniture. The construction of most chairs, it seems, is for stacking as opposed to sitting, which puts some children at risk for back pain. This is because mass production yields chairs that cause discomfort by their very design.

Prolonged sitting, as one study suggests, is detrimental to the health of a child. Back pain is just one potential problem that poorly designed chairs could cause. The effect of school furniture, however, could go beyond the physical strain. It could also affect a child’s performance.

The School Chair and Performance

A study published in the Journal of Ergonomics finds that 64 per cent of respondents showed the positive effects of school furniture on performance. The compatibility between a student’s height, weight and girth and the school chair’s dimensions was a key factor for enhancing the physical responses of the subjects.

In the study, the researchers used sit-stand furniture, high furniture and tilt tables and seats. Twenty four per cent of the respondents showed negative effects while 12 per cent showed no clear effect.

Plenty of factors can affect the education of a child. With the thousands of hours that students tend to spend sitting, it makes sense to invest in ergonomically-designed seats. An investment in school furniture is also an investment towards the performance and wellbeing of student.