Office chair vs gaming chair – which is best for ergonomics?

Office chair vs gaming chair on a blue and cyan background
(Image credit: Future / Secretlab / Herman Miller)

Office chair vs gaming chair could be a quandary you're struggling with if you're looking to take advantage of the best Black Friday office chair deals. Which is most comfortable, but most importantly which is the most ergonomic?

Creative Bloq's reviewers have tested dozens of office chairs and gaming chairs, using each of them for several weeks in real-world tests to see how well they work. Based on their findings, below we'll consider whether office chairs or gaming chairs are most ergonomic and also make some suggestions for the best options in each category. We'll also look at how to sit properly in a chair in order to best protect your posture, because the design of the chair itself is only part of the equation.

Office chair vs gaming chair: design and style


Gaming chairs like this AndaSeat T-Pro 2 tend to be inspired by racing, with bucket seats and winged backs (Image credit: AndaSeat)

Office chairs come in many forms, offering vastly different levels of quality. Gaming chairs can vary greatly too, but there is a kind of gaming style. They often a bucket seat, winged backrests and a distinct racing influence, with go faster stripes or lines in a highlighted colour (or even LED lighting!)

Whether you like this look comes down to personal taste, but generally a gaming chair looks like a gaming chair, and it can look a bit out of place in an office or studio. Office chairs on the other hand vary immensely, and can have short or tall backs, but most have flat seats and no wings on backrests. Most of the best office chairs are sleek and stylish and, for many of us, do look better than gaming chairs. They tend to be more understated, with no gaudy colours, or oversized logos, and they tend to be more functional too.

A SIHOO M90D chair in the middle of a coridoor.

Office chairs like this Sihoo M90D, shown here in our reviewer's home, tend to have mesh backs for improved air flow (Image credit: Future)

As for other factors in the design, gaming chairs tend to go big on comfort. They tend to use a lot of padding, but again, that doesn't always look great, and they sometimes recline further than office chairs. But padding and reclining does not necessarily mean great ergonomics. Meanwhile, while gaming chairs tend to have a solid back, many office chairs go for mesh backs, which have allow air to flow thus reducing heat and the risk of a sweaty back if you're working on a hot day.

Office chair vs gaming chair: ergonomics

A close up of the mid section of the Aeron chair.

The Herman Miller Aeron office chair has lumbar support, as photographed by our reviewer (Image credit: Future)

Although gaming chairs tend to be kitted out for comfort for long periods sitting, many of them are not great for one of the most important factors in what makes a chair ergonomic: lumbar support. Some of the best gaming chairs do include pillows that provide a degree of lumbar support, but for the best support a good office chair will usually sin here.

Many gaming chairs also have a raised front lip on the seat of the chair. This very slightly inclines the legs: not the best position for long periods sitting. Office chairs, on the other hand, tend to have a 90 degree waterfall edge ensuring your feet stay flat on the ground. Office chairs often also include head support and more adjustability than gaming chairs – adjustability is another important factor in ergonomics since it means there's most chance of being to configure the chair so it perfectly fits your shape and build.

Office chair vs gaming chair: durability

In both office chairs and gaming chairs, durability varies depending on the quality of the build. Many gaming chairs are made from fairly durable faux leather, and this tends of be of higher quality if you pay for a more expensive option. Office chairs wish mesh backs tend to last long, and more expensive options will usually have studier structures and better quality casters.

Is an office chair or a gaming chair best for ergonomics?

Both office chairs and gaming chairs come in many different designs with varying levels of ergonomics. However, in our experience based on the many chairs that we have personally reviewed and tested, office chairs are more likely to provide the lumbar support and adjustability needed to be truly ergonomic.

Which is the best ergonomic chair to buy on Black Friday?

The best Herman Miller chairs photographed at the Herman Miller office

The Herman Miler Aeron is our pick as the best ergonomic office chair overall (Image credit: Future)

We'll be tracking all of the best office chair Black Friday deals throughout November, providing links direct to the retailers with the best prices. The best ergonomic chairs are not cheap investments, especially those from top brands such as Herman Miller – the gold standard for ergonomic chairs, in our opinion. That makes Black Friday the ideal time to buy. 

The Herman Miller Aeron is our pick as the best ergonomic office chair overall thanks to its beautiful design and high-quality build. This is one chair to price watch assiduously. Meanwhile at the top of our pick of the best gaming chairs is the Secretlab Titan Evo. We gave both of these chairs 4.5 out of 5 stars with price being the only factor that lost them half a point. Finding a Black Friday deal can help amend that downside.

See below for the best prices on our favourite office chairs and gaming chairs in your region below.

How to sit properly in a chair

The ergonomics of a chair are only part of the equation. No matter of well-considered ergonomic design can work miracles; you also have to ensure that you're sitting in the best way for your posture. 

Many of us were told as children to avoid slouching, and for good reason. Sitting up straight with your neck in a relaxed, neutral position is the best way to avoid developing bad habits. Your Arms should be parallel to the floor, as should your feet, and avoid crossing your legs, at least most of the time, in order to allow correct blood circulation. 

You should also aim to sit at about arm’s length from your computer screen with the top of the monitor level with your eyes, which will help to avoid you hunching to look down at your screen. More generally, it's a good idea to take breaks, get up and move around and to change posture during the day. 

This will help you keep comfortable since the movement increases blood flow. It can also help keep you alert, more focused in generally in a better mood tool. Doing this doesn't have to involve setting a timer or anything too strenuous. It can be as simple as taking quick five-minute breaks when you can, rocking in your chair and changing the angle of the backrest. Ideally, you should also try to take some time to do recommended desk exercises.

Make sure you're also following our guide to the best Apple Black Friday deals for more seasonal savings.

Joseph Foley

Joe is a regular freelance journalist and editor at Creative Bloq. He writes news and features, updates buying guides and keeps track of the best equipment for creatives, from monitors to accessories and office supplies. A writer and translator, he also works as a project manager at London and Buenos Aires-based design, production and branding agency Hermana Creatives, where he manages a team of designers, photographers and video editors who specialise in producing photography, video content, graphic design and collaterals for the hospitality sector. He enjoys photography, particularly nature photography, wellness and he dances Argentine tango.