Saddle chairs and stools have been used by professionals such as dentists and beauticians for many years now. With the focus on better sitting posture and health, these chairs have also began to make their way into ordinary offices and homes.
If you’re looking to improve your posture, strengthen your core and reduce back pain, a saddle chair may be worth looking into. In this guide, we show you the best ones based on your body size. sitting duration, and gender.
Best Ergonomic Saddle Chairs and Stools
Here is our picks for the best ergonomic saddle stools for your office and home at a glance:
- Jaune Backless Rolling Saddle Chair – Best Overall
- FRNIAMC Saddle Stool with Backrest – Best for long term sitting
- Antlu Saddle Stool Rolling Chair – Best for female and more petite users
- Master Massage Split Saddle Stool – Top option for larger men
- Capisco Saddle Office Chair – Most ergonomic (but pricy)
- Varier Move Tilting Saddle Stool – Best for short term active sitting
Jaune Backless Rolling Saddle Chair
For beginners, we recommend the Jaune saddle chair with its text book horse shoe shaped seat and adjustability.
The contour of the Jaune chair distributes your body weight evenly across its two halves, helping new users easily make the transition from a standard office chair to the saddle stool. One customer also liked that the seat is a bit more padded than other brands- this allows him to use the chair for a longer period of time.
The saddle chair also comes with one of the highest range of seat height, going from a low 24″ to as high as 31.5″. This means you can use the chair with a standing desk to take quick respites while standing. On the flip side, the 24″ height means when used with a standard desk, you may need to put your laptop on a desk riser to elevate your work space to match.
The biggest disappointment with the Jaune chair are the casters. They feel cheap and do not roll smoothly even on hard surfaces.
At the end of the day, if you’re new to saddle chairs, the Jaune saddle chair is probably still your best bet thanks to the low cost yet excellent comfort and quality.
FRNIAMC Saddle Stool with Backrest
- Save Your Back From Painful- The ergonomic "saddle" shape seat design corrects your posture to be...
- Seat Height Adjustable-The stool chair height overall 20-29.5'', taller than most other saddle chairs
- Caster Wheels roll smooth and free-noise- Heavy duty 5 Nylon wheels move smoothly and quiet on all kinds...
If you intend to use a saddle chair for longer than a couple of hours in one stretch, a backrest is advised to give your hips and back a respite from time to time. People who use saddle chairs in their profession such as nurses, dentists, or beauticians in particular will find it a godsend.
To that end, a good saddle chair with a backrest is the Frnimac. It’s reasonably well built with a metal and aluminum frame, is reasonably priced, and most importantly, comes with removable backrest. Once you feel that you are balanced and toned enough to use the saddle chair without the backrest, you can simply take off the back.
Height range wise the Frnimac can go from 20″ to 29.5″ inches. At the lowest setting this is basically the same as a regular office chair, making it suitable to pair with a standard desk. In contrast, the lowest seat height for the Jaune chair above is 24″.
A nail technician who owns the Frnimac and who has major hip pain credits the saddle stool for greatly alleviating her pain.
Antlu Saddle Stool Rolling Chair
- Ergonomic:This saddle stool chair design for extra comfort on your back and spine,this design reduces...
- Comfortable : The seat cushion of this rolling saddle stool is a little thicker than the conventional...
- Rotation :The cushions and wheels are free to rotate, you can use this saddle swivel stool to roll freely...
If you’re slim or petite, the Antlu is a better alternative to our top pick the Jaune saddle chair above. The seat is more narrow (14″ wide vs 17. 91″), with a lower seat height range. Think of it as a smaller version of the Jaune chair.
With its 13.8” wide seat and a 21.2” to 27.9” height adjustment, the Antlu is perfect for female users in particular. Aside from being cushy, it is slightly more contoured than the Jaune as well. One customer said that he has significantly less back pain after using this product for 8 hours since it pushes him into a more natural position.
In terms of aesthetics, the Antlu looks chic with its synthetic leather cover and is very easy to clean. Its polyurethane and rubber wheels won’t scratch your hard floor. It also doesn’t require any tools and just snaps together for easy assembly.
The problem with the Antlu is the build quality, which one owner describes as meh. This means it’s definitely not for heavy people that are any where near the advertised maximum 400 lbs weight limit.
Overall, this saddle chair is a good choice for women and more petite folks looking for one to use sporadically at the desk, kitchen counter, or at work.
Master Massage Split Saddle Stool
Our best pick for men is the Master Massage Saddle Stool, a split saddle chair that makes it more comfortable for men to sit in. It’s also more heavy duty than many of its competitors out there.
The highlight of this stool is is the unique split panel design with a larger center gap. The more gentle contouring in the front better conforms to the physiology of men for improved blood circulation, especially for long term sitting.
One happy customer mentioned that the design removed the high hump a lot of solid saddle chairs have, making it more comfortable for men to use.
Another factor that makes the Master Massage saddle especially well suited for men is the heavy duty design. The thick metal cylinder and durable aluminum five star base has a safety weight limit of ovver 600 lbs. Indeed, one owner of the stool weighs 400 lbs, and said this is the only saddle chair he’s found that feels sturdy for him when he sits on it.
The problem with the Kanewell is that the padding is on the thin side. This makes it hard to use it for the entire workday, in which case we recommend getting a good ergonomic chair to alternate it with.
As long as you don’t need to use the Master Massage stool for extended periods of time, it is a great choice for anyone wanting to boost their pelvic health, especially men.
Capisco Saddle Office Chair
- PERFECT FOR: Shifting between sitting and standing at an adjustable or standing height desk – seat...
- ALL DAY COMFORT: Award winning design, Capisco Puls Plus fully cushioned and narrow saddle seat promotes...
- FULLY ADJUSTABLE: Seat height, seat depth, back height and back tilt allows for maximum healthy sitting...
The tallest chair on our list, the Capisco Saddle Office Chair is fully adjustable and eco-friendly. With a seat height adjustment of 22” to 31”, this is a great fit for tall office workers who want to achieve the perfect leg angle.
We love that the Capisco has an adjustable seat depth, back height, and back tilt. In fact, this is the chair Joe Rogan uses and credits with helping him come back from back pain.
What sets it apart, however, is the unique backrest design that enables you to change from a standard seated position to a sideways lean or reverse seating. This versatility allows you to flow from one position to another as you change tasks throughout your work day. In fact, according to one satisfied buyer, the combination of these features ended his three-year back and thigh pains in just a few days.
The Capisco is made from 50% recycled materials and is up to 90% recyclable. As such, this is the saddle chair to get if you’re environmentally conscious. It is Greenguard certified and the pneumatic lift comes with a 10-year warranty so you know you’re decreasing your carbon footprint by investing in a long-lasting product.
The main disadvantage of the Capisco is its high price. Additionally, it isn’t suitable for buyers who weigh more than 250 pounds.
If you have enough to invest in the Capisco, you’ll find out that it’s well worth its price. You can even pick among three versions, with the Puls Plus being our favorite for the added cushion.
Varier Move Tilting Saddle Stool
The Varier Move is a saddle and wobble stool combo that can be paired with both standard and standing desks. Stylish and breathable, it’s a fusion of a chair that will push you to be more active while working.
Unlike the other saddle chairs in our lineup, the Varier Move has a fixed, slightly curved base that allows the user to gently tilt in all directions. The saddle seat isn’t as contoured as the Antlu so it’s more forgiving if you have stiff hips. The horn doesn’t protrude that much either so there’s less pressure on the genital area.
According to one review, the combination of the saddle seat and wobbly base allows for a great variety of hip and foot positions. You can rotate your hips or lean back or forward. Plus, you can give your back and leg muscles a good stretch.
There are some complaints saying that the Varier Move is uncomfortable to use for more than an hour at a time. But, this is in fact a characteristic of most active chairs – they are designed for short term sitting. With the backless design and unstable base, the Varier Move isn’t meant to support all your muscles like a regular office chair. It’s meant to encourage you to move often while seated.
If there was anything to complain about, that’d be the price. It isn’t quite as expensive as the Capisco but it still costs double the price of some of the other saddle chairs on our list at upwards of $300.
As for the rest, it’s more of a compromise rather than a drawback. You get breathable fabric upholstery but it’s a hair magnet. You sacrifice mobility but you get to move more with the unstable base.
If you have a standing desk, the Varier Move is worth looking into as a good saddle stool that encourages both good posture and frequent moving.
What is a Saddle Chair / Stool?
As you might have guessed from its name, a saddle chair is shaped like an equestrian saddle. The unique shape puts the user in a forward leaning position with the hips and knees bent at around 135°, versus the 90° angle that comes with sitting in a regular office chair.
In a ground breaking study done by Danish surgeon A.C. Mandal, he found a forward leaning seat helped the spine maintain its natural curvature the best, and as such is the most suitable position for long periods of sitting. It can be especially helpful for people with lower back pain, and can even help prevent chronic back pain from developing.
Also See: Saddle Chair Benefits and Drawbacks
Watch the video below to see how a saddle stool is used:
What to Look for in a Saddle Chair
There are two types of saddle stools available – solid and divided. A divided saddle stool is split in the middle with some models even having an adjustable gap. This design can be more beneficial for men (more on this later).
Here are some other things you should consider when buying a saddle stool.
- Contour: The more contoured the seat is, the more support you get. But, this also increases the chance that it might not fit you. If you want to buy a highly contoured saddle chair, make sure to give it a try first.
- Firmness: A saddle chair takes a while to get used to for beginners. To make it more comfortable during the transition, we advise getting a softly cushioned one first before moving on to the firmer options.
- Backrest: If you intend to use your saddle stool for many hours on end (such as in the office), consider getting one with a backrest. Otherwise, alternate it with a regular ergonomic office chair.
- Tilt: Look for saddle chairs that come with tilting if possible. This allows you to adjust the seat according to your anatomy for comfort.
- Seat Height: A saddle stool is higher than a regular office chair so you’re basically maintaining a supported standing posture. Set it too high and you risk irritating the groan area. Set it too low and you’ll slump. When properly done, the perfect leg bend is 120° to 135°.
- Desk Height: Since a saddle chair is higher than a regular office chair, a height adjustable desk is a must. You can also opt to buy a desk riser or stand and skip buying a new desk.
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