People shorter than the average height for adults can struggle when finding ergonomic chairs that fit them properly.
Chairs that are built for people of average or above height are made to support those people with their posture, and if you don’t fit their measurements then you will suffer as a result.
This is the case even if the chair features an ergonomic design. If you are the wrong height for an ergonomic chair then you will not receive any ergonomic benefits, and you may come away in more pain than you were in before.
So what types of chairs should you look out for if you want a smaller office chair? Read on to find out.
As a note, in this article we are not referring to individuals with dwarfism. We are referring to adults who are under the average height of 5’9” for men and 5’3” for women.
Problems caused by sitting in the wrong chair
First of all, is sitting in the wrong chair actually bad for you? Well, the answer is a resounding yes.
It is not the case that sitting in a chair that is too big will just make you cushioned and comfortable. In fact, if the chair you are sitting in is too large for your body, then you can actually develop multiple problems with your back and your legs.
This is because if you are unable to sit against the backrest whilst keeping your feet on the floor, you’ll be creating a lose-lose situation.
If you sit against the backrest and your feet don’t touch the floor, you’ll create a pressure build up on the back of the legs. And if you sit with your feet on the floor, then your spine and lower back will not be supported by the backrest.
Problems such as these can escalate quickly as they compound over time. So, if you find yourself sitting in a chair that is too large for you, then the best decision you can make is to invest in a new chair that actually fits your proportions.
Ideal measurements of office chairs for small adults
In our post on office chairs for big people, we noted that tall people should look for chairs that measure around 21” height, 18.5” depth, and 21.5” width. So it should go without saying that smaller people should look for chairs that are not this big!
Instead, smaller people should look for chairs that measure at closer to 16” height, 18.5” depth, and 21.5” width, if not smaller.
The most important measurement to pay attention to though is depth. This is because if the chair is too deep then you will not be able to sit firmly against the backrest with your feet on the floor.
Chair height is not as vital, as if you are too small for a chair but you can still sit against the backrest then you can top-up the height difference by using a footrest.
Most office chairs these days come with tools to adjust the height and depth of the seat. Unfortunately, while a lot of chairs can be adjusted to be made bigger, their minimum height may also be too big to be comfortable for smaller than average people.
For this reason, we are going to highlight some of our chairs that are suitable chairs for small people. Including one with a chair seat height of 16 inches, a lot smaller than the average chair height.
PAM Health RS100
The PAM Health RS100 is a fantastic introduction to ergonomic chairs for smaller individuals. This chair comes with all of the foundations that make an ergonomic chair great, such as a dual curved backrest, waterfall seat, and completely adjustable dimensions, and sacrifices nothing in order to accommodate smaller than average people.
One of the best features that this chair has is its seat slide adjustment. This means that you can adjust the depth of the seat by 50mm, which is perfect for smaller people. Also, the seat is composed of ergo-density moulded foam cushioning which means it will be comfortable for long hours in the office.
Simply make your choice of black, grey, or blue colour and whether you want to include height and depth adjustable armrests and you will be well on your way to sitting happily and healthily while at work.
Karma High Back Task
One of the more stylish chairs on this list is the Karma High Back Task Chair. The seat and backrest come in divergent colourways, with the choice of grey, orange, black, or cobalt blue, which creates an eye-catching design.
However, it is not a choice of style over substance with the Karma chair. Instead, you have a solid choice of ergonomic chair that comes with all of the basics that you may need and then even more.
The backrest is long and perfectly tailored to the shape of the whole spine. And what’s more, it even comes with inflatable lumbar support as standard for those people who may need a little extra support on their lower back.
For smaller individuals, customise your seat size by going with the shorter option which reduces the depth by 20mm. This can then be customised even further with use of the handy seat slide adjustment tool.
Zen Medium Task Chair
At first glance you should be able to see how the backrest on this chair is a standout feature. The curved backrest is very pronounced, which offers great support for the lower back while also freeing up movement in the shoulders and neck. Perfect for people who work seated and need to frequently manoeuvre their arms at their desk or workstation.
There are a lot of choices that you can make when personalising this chair to your requirements. You can customise your castors according to what flooring material you work on such as carpeted or hard floor. There is even the opportunity to upgrade the chair to the Draughtsman version that comes with a built-in foot ring, which may be beneficial for smaller people who would be interested in purchasing a footrest separately anyway.
As with the Karma chair, the Zen Medium Task Chair comes with a choice of shorter seat size which reduces the depth by 20mm. And don’t worry, there is also a seat slide adjustment that will enable you to further tailor your seat depth to your needs.
As standard, the Being chair comes with a very broad seat height range with a minimum height of under 16.5”! This is incredibly low when compared to most other office chairs available on the market today. The seat depth can also be customised through the choice of a smaller seat cushion.
If you value the aesthetics of your chair then the Being is a great choice for you. While the shape and silhouette are understated, the colour can provide a pleasant contrast with the broad choice of fabric colours that are on offer. You have your standard colours like black, blue, and even red, but then you also have more unique colours such as purple, burgundy, and avocado!
Finally, the Being chair comes with the choice of an optional headrest, which makes for an excellent addition if you find that you suffer with pain in your neck through lack of support while seated.
HF2 Chiropod Chair
The HF2 Chiropod chair is one of the best chairs that you could buy, especially if you are a smaller person.
As standard, the chair comes with a low seat height of just under 17”. And this is made even better by the choice of two different smaller seat sizes: a standard short seat and a wide short seat. When you consider as well the included seat slide adjustment, you have a petite office chair that has the smallest seat depth of all the chairs that we stock.
On top of this, the backrest and seat mechanisms are completely independent, meaning that you can customise the height and angle of the backrest without adjusting the position of the seat.
Choose from a selection of additional armrests, including fully adjustable Tri-Sec armrests that can slide on vertical and horizontal planes, and other seat/headrest customisable features to leave you with a fantastic choice of chair, perfectly suited to your unique requirements.
PAM Health chairs for small people
There you have it, the best small and petite office chairs that we stock. Any of these chairs will be excellent, so just do your own research into each one and their benefits and make your choice from there.
If you require any other type of chair instead, such as a kneeling chair, then please see the rest of our store for the best ergonomic chairs you can buy.