No, office chairs do not need to have wheels to be used as an office chair, although a wheeled chair can be very useful in a workspace. Charles Darwin was the first person to come up with the idea of putting wheels on their chair.
The wheels allowed them to move around their office so that they could study quicker and get on with their work without having to get up from their seat every couple of minutes. This premise still stands today when it comes to office chairs.
You won’t notice the importance of a wheeled office chair until you get used to one, then try to get through the workday using a seat without wheels. Being able to travel from your desk to your files and back again without ever standing up is incredibly convenient and productive.
Office chairs without wheels are a rarity on the market as to be classified as an office chair, it often needs to have a chair base with five legs, each of which ends with a castor wheel.
The five wheels give your office chair a more stable base so that you can move around without the risk of falling over while wheeling to another destination.
Some people don’t want to use an office chair with wheels to avoid a sedentary lifestyle. Opting for an office chair without wheels forces you to get up and walk to wherever you need to be. Office chairs designed for standing desks or to avoid a sedentary lifestyle do not need wheels.
If you’re looking for an office chair that won’t break your bank, see our Best Office Chair Under £100 here.
Why do all office chairs have wheels?
Office chairs will commonly have wheels to keep you productive during your working hours. Remaining at one level while moving from your desk to other desks, storage cabinets, or anywhere else in the office prevents you from wasting time standing up and sitting back down.
We don’t know if you have ever noticed how you react when standing up from sitting in an office chair for a long time. Many of us will stand up, but instead of moving straight away to where we need to go, we will take a minute or two to stretch, look around, and readjust our eyes from staring at a computer screen for too long.
After doing what you needed to do and returning to your desk, you won’t sit down right away and get straight back into your work. You might adjust your chair, reacquaint yourself with what you are working on, and take some time to refocus on your work.
This might not seem like a big waste of time to you, but when you’re getting up from your desk multiple times an hour, your productivity will be greatly affected. When you can wheel yourself everywhere you need to go without wasting so much time getting up and sitting back down again.
The loss of productivity is why many employers will have office chairs in their workplaces so that you can focus more on your work and less on getting up and down from the chair.
Why do office chairs have 5 wheels?
There are a few reasons why office chairs have five wheels on the chair base. The first we have already touched upon and is due to the fact that five wheels offer better stability. The five legs will be in a star formation which evenly distributes the weight of you and your chair so that you can wheel around without the chair tipping over.
If you’ve ever used an office chair with less than five wheels, you’ll be able to feel the difference in stability between the five wheel option and the lower alternative. Five wheels seem to be the ideal balance between too many wheels and not enough stability.
Another reason why office chairs have five wheels is to spread the weight over the floor better. If the office chair were only to have three wheels, each castor would be pressing more weight into the floor. This is a particular issue when the office chair is being used on the carpet.
When the wheels are pushed deeper into the carpet, it can make it more difficult to move the wheels across the floor. This stops you from being able to glide from A to B, reducing the efficiency of your chair.
As most offices are carpeted, the office chairs being able to move across the floor is incredibly important. The more legs the chair has the better the weight will be spread across all of the legs, preventing the wheels from sinking into the carpet too much and therefore being able to move easily over all sorts of flooring types.
Another reason that office chairs have five wheels is to make them more bottom-heavy to prevent them from tipping over.