When Do You Use Seat Wedges?
Confused By Which Seat Wedge To Buy?
Do You Know Which Wedge Would Be Best For You?
We know that it can all seem a bit confusing as to which material to buy or angle of wedge to get. We aim to give you a better idea with this short guide.
Seat wedges are shaped foam cushions which are for use on office chairs, dining chairs or chairs with a firmer base, and car seats. This means you can get back pain relief by sitting more comfortably and in a better position without going to the expense of buying a new chair. We would not recommend the use of seat wedges on soft seating or sofas; if you are looking for something to improve support on this type of seating then we would recommend back supports such as the Sissel Dorsaback.
Your seat should ideally have a slight downwards slope, however you may have a chair that is not adjustable or even slopes backwards! If this is the case it could be encouraging you to slouch and round through the back or slip forwards which is just the opposite of back pain relief. It will cause you to sit more towards the back of your pelvis. Sitting this way is bad posture and puts strain on the back as a whole and can affect any area of your back, neck to pelvis.
A sitting wedge is there to help you to sit so that your hips are higher than your knees. So if your current chair is too low you need to estimate how much you need a wedge to raise you up by to create this effect. Once you know how much this is it will help to guide you to the size of wedge you need (height at the back/sitting wedge angle – they come as slimline, 8 degree, 11 degree)
Wedges help to open the angle between your torso and upper leg and create a better sitting surface. Although wedges provide a better environment for you to sit on there is an important point we need to stress at this point – You still need to sit up on them! Wedges do not miraculously make you sit with perfect posture they merely give you a nudge in the right direction. The slope encourages your pelvis to tilt forwards slightly which enhances the inwards curve of your lower back (lordosis). This in turn helps you to sit more upright with your body weight falling more naturally through your sitting bones and reduces strain on the joints, discs and ligaments of the whole of the spine all the way up to your head! If you would like to learn more about why posture is so important please refer to our article “What Is So Important About Posture Anyway?’.
Dimensions for each seat wedge are W (width side to side), D (depth from front to back) and H (maximum thickness at the back of the wedge or the thickness of flat cushions).
Seat wedges come in varying degrees of height. The larger the angle the more you will be ‘actively sitting’ which means that you will be using more of your back muscles and can thus help to strengthen your spine as you sit. A stronger back will over time help back pain.
If you have a chair that only needs a slight raise then a slimline or 8 degree wedge will suffice as an 11 degree wedge can feel too much like it is tipping you forwards.
The Sitting Wedges In Our Range
We have a specially selected range of wedges available here at Sittingwell. The main differences other than the height are:
The Sit Standard wedge is the cheapest of the options. It is firm so unless you like a harder feel to sit on you may find it too much for sitting for longer periods.
The Harley wedges are a medium firmness and made from chip-foam or memory foam. The memory foam wedges are known as their designer range. The Slimline wedges do come with the option of a fixing strap which can be particularly helpful if you are sitting on a chair that has a flat seat to it as it prevents the wedge from slipping off.
Putmans wedges are the only ones that are slightly rounded off and curved at the back (all of the others are squared off). They are all memory foam. They are the softer of the wedges to sit on whilst still being durable and holding their shape when you sit down.
We have coccyx relief options with all of our wedges.