Typist Chair

What is a “typist chair”?

An old fashioned typist chair is categorised by the absence of armrests, a small seat and backrest, and simple height adjustment. typist chair in a traditional typing poolTraditionally these chairs were very basic in their design and were used predominantly by females in ‘typing pools’. Not only has the era of typewriters and traditional typist chairs moved on, but so has our awareness of the ergonomic workplace requirements of a seated person. What happens to your body when you sit? We now know that chairs with such limited adjustability are bad for our backs and body in general, and as a result modern ‘typist’ chairs that are available for sale have more ergonomic features to prevent back and other health-related problems. What is the right home office chair for me?

Instead of sitting behind a typewriter all day, most of us now spend the majority of our day on a keyboard behind a computer. Our choice of available swivel office chairs for different work applications, is huge. Ergonomic chairs and orthopedic chairs for back problems, are just some of the modern ‘typist chair’ choices!

With so many options, how do you select a “typist” chair?

How to correctly adjust the height of a typist chair to prevent or reduce back, neck and shoulder pain

The correct way to adjust the height of a typist chair is by doing so away from the desk. Here is a brief summary, or if you prefer, watch our detailed video:

  • Sit back in the chair with your back positioned against the chair backrest.
  • The correct chair height is when both your feet are flat on the floor and your knees are slightly lower than the level of your hips.
  • Now (and only now), move the chair towards the desk.
  • Your arms should be able to rest on the desk with your elbows bent at approximately 900.
  • If your elbows are bent at an angle much greater than 900, the desk is too lowRAISE THE HEIGHT OF THE DESKDo not lower the chair height! This is VERY IMPORTANT.
  • If your elbows are bent at an angle less than 900, the desk is too highRAISE THE HEIGHT OF THE CHAIR and use a FOOTREST to support your feet. DO NOT let your feet dangle in the air.

Video Guide:
How to correctly setup your typist chair, desk and monitor.


There are some many typist chairs available for sale, so if you are working from home, avoid buying a cheap one as the long-term impact on your health and wellbeing is simply not worth it! The 5 most important features on a home office chair.

Do you have a bad back and need some expert advice on preventing back problems and selecting the right executive, typist, orthopedic or heavy-duty office chair? Contact us or book an Ergonomic Assessment where our team of experts will happily assist you with your requirements.

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