So you’re on the fence about getting a gaming chair? You see it everywhere now, every pro gamer or streamer has one of those fancy stylish racing-style chairs. But you’re not sure if it’s worth buying a gaming chair?
Don’t worry, we’re gonna evaluate if it really is and I promise you’ll have the answer after reading this article. Let me tell you right up front, the answer might surprise you, but let’s get right into it!
Are Gaming Chairs Worth it?
The surprising answer is: yes and no!
As most of the time, it really depends on the reasons you want to get one, what kind of chair you already got, your budget, and so on. If it’s just to improve your poor gaming posture or increase comfort, then there are other options as well.
But if you’re looking for the design, it’s another story.
Also, there are basically two different kinds of gaming chairs you could mean. First of all there those classic ones for sitting at a desk, that you could have seen on the video of your favorite gaming Youtuber.
Or there are floor chairs, for console players similar to bean bags. Some of them are also foldable to save space when you’re not gaming. But let’s discuss those at the end of the article.
First let’s consider a couple of things to see if, how, and why gaming chairs are worth it or not.
So here is one of the main reasons why it’s actually worth purchasing one. The awesome gaming chair designs.
Most of them come in a cool racing style design and multiple colors. So you can select one that fits your personal taste and also your gaming setup.
This is also the main difference between a gaming chair and a regular chair. Both of them will have similar ergonomics and options to adjust a lot of parts, like the armrests lumbar support, or recline of the chair.
But only gaming chairs have this unique design where everybody instantly knows what they are designed for…gaming!
Ergonomics And Comfort
Another reason you might want to consider gaming chairs is the ergonomics. But that’s only half the truth of this selling point.
The full truth is proper ergonomics is mostly choosing the right adjustments in between your chair, desk, and body.
Extensive gaming sessions can last up to multiple hours a day, so of course, it makes sense paying attention to ergonomics and comfort.
But there are multiple great ergonomics desk chairs for under $200 that do the very same.
It’s common knowledge nowadays that sitting is the new smoking, the average person spends too much time sitting. 
Thus there are some methods to solving this problem, like standing desks, sitting on gymnastic balls, or using stationary bikes while working.
But first and foremost you need to correct your sitting habits and position and in an ergonomic way to relieve your body from the stress of sitting all day long in an unfavorable manner.
Throughout the day your muscles fatigue and your posture becomes worse.
At the latest, here is where you need the proper ergonomics to support your body.
It’s important to adjust that chair to the right height, so your arms can rest on your table with a 90-degree angle in your elbow. Also, your feet should be flat on the ground and you should have some lumbar support.
That’s already the biggest part about ergonomics. But you need to have the options to adjust the chair for that and good gaming chairs will have those.
Not all of the options will be necessary but pick the ones you need to adjust the chair to your personal preferences.
Here are some more details about the options that gaming chairs, as well as conventional office chairs, can give you to see if it’s worth it.
Seat and Lumbar Support
Basically, every single gaming chair lets you adjust the seat height, so that’s a standard feature.
The seat of your chair should be fairly cushioned, that’s kinda obvious. But also the edge of the seat should be rounded to prevent it from cutting the blood flow to your legs when sitting for a couple of hours.
The lumbar support can be a little tricky. Every body is different and thus it’s hard to manufacture lumbar support that fits everyone.
It should be at least adjustable in its height you can find the right spot to support your lower back.
Otherwise, it should be removable. Some people actually prefer sitting without lumbar pillow. Even some pricey ergonomic office chairs don’t necessarily have proper lumbar support.
That’s not because the office chairs are bad, but because it’s tough to make a one-size-fits-all chair.
Most gaming chairs feature a lumbar pillow that you can move up and down or just remove. Another one is located in the neck area to support your upper back and relax your head and shoulders.
The backrest should support the natural double-S curve of your spine. Nearly all gaming chairs have a prolonged backrest with two adjustable pillows to support this natural curve.
The tiltable angle of the backrest can vary a lot.
There are some that don’t tilt at all, so make sure to check that.
Tilting back your chair will make your game more enjoyable and comfortable.
Some of the chairs even have a footrest that you can use to put your legs up. That may be unnecessary when you’re sitting at your desk playing with the PC. But when you’re using a console a joypad and no keyboard, you can lay back and enjoy your session.
In my opinion, this is one of the most important features. First of all, you need the proper armrests to sit ergonomically, no matter if you play or work.
Your elbows should be able to rest on them without getting your shoulders pushed up. That would cause unpleasant tension in your neck. So your armrests should be adjustable in the height.
Also, the armrests shouldn’t be too long. In a proper ergonomically sitting position your elbows rest on the armrests and your forearms on the desk, while your keyboards kind of feels like a natural extension of your hands.
I had a chair once with long armrests, reaching to the edge of the seat, thus making it impossible to get closer to the desk because they hit the edge of the table while having the proper height adjusted.
So do yourself a favor and get a gaming chair with fairly short armrests.
Another big mistake can be unpadded armrests. while playing a game for multiple hours with your elbows pressing onto them, it’ll start hurting, or eventually, you can even get inflammation in your elbows.
The idea behind gaming chairs is to make them ergonomic and support you in ultra-long gaming sessions. When your gaming chair has enough options to adjust it ergonomically it’ll be way comfier.
So make sure to pick one with the adjustment options you need and want.
Usually, they are also padded generously, to make your seat as comfy as possible.
The cheaper ones tend to be padded a bit thinner, so you may want to look at that before purchasing one. But from a price range of $150 and above you can safely assume the upholstering is thick and comfy.
So when you’re looking for gaming chairs because you want more comfort, it’s totally worth it.
Chairs for Bigger People
One more addition to that factors you should consider before you order a gaming chair. Your height and weight.
If you’re rather tall or you weigh over 250lbs you should take a look at the chair’s measurements and recommendations.
Because of the design, they don’t really fit well on different body types. The racing-style shape of the backrest limits the body type by clasping around your body a little. So pay attention to the recommended weight and height of the gaming chair companies.
For bigger guys, you can find the DXRacer Tank Series for example.
Since a vast majority of gaming chairs are designed to look like racing seats they are mostly made out of leather.
It’s easy to clean by just wiping it off and easy to maintain. Most gaming chair companies will choose PU leather instead of genuine leather because it’s cheaper.
But that’s not necessarily a bad thing.
Firstly, no animal had to die for the looks of your gaming chair.
Secondly, modern PU leathers meanwhile can have better characteristics than the real stuff.
You’ll also find some chairs made out of fabric or mesh. Fabric isn’t really recommended because it stains easily and doesn’t look very good actually.
Mesh is mostly found in ergonomic office chairs because its breathability. Some people don’t like the look of it, but personally, I think it looks kinda cool.
But for the full experience, a racing-style gaming chair made with leather would be the first option. Especially when you’re playing racing games and use a steering wheel.
As most of the time, durability depends on the quality of the product and on how you take care of it.
Leather can be very durable but tends to crumble after a while. There are some products to keep PU leather fresh and durable, so pick a sturdy product (not the cheapest one) and take care of your gaming chair and it’ll last forever.
Some gaming chairs have some pretty cool extra features like built-in speakers, cupholders or my favorite one, vibration.
Of course, that are some gimmicks that won’t improve the quality of the chair but they are fun and can improve your gaming experience or help you relax.
Just imagine leaning back, getting your legs up on the footrest, and taking some vibrating massage after a long exhausting gaming session.
Sounds relaxing, doesn’t it?
The prices range between $100-500. Decent gaming chairs are available at around $150-200 already.
Is this price tag justified? Absolutely.
If you take a look at ergonomic desk chairs they can easily cost $500 and way more. A great ergonomic chair is available closely under $300 and a decent one still at around $200.
Having similar options for proper ergonomics for $150-200 with gaming chairs doesn’t seem to be too bad at all, considering you can pay over $1000 for a Herman Miller Chair.
Also considering a decent gaming setup already costs around $2000, adding a chair for a fraction of that money to support your health is totally reasonable.
Gaming Chairs vs Office Chairs
Let me clarify the difference between those two to help you make a decision based on the pricing of both.
A gaming chair is basically only an ergonomic office chair with a bold and aggressive design with a bucket seat style like in a racing car. You can get decent gaming chairs for less than an ergonomic office chair, but you can also get a crappy gaming chair where you could have gotten a better ergonomic chair for less.
That means you could spend $400 for a gaming chair but also get a great classic ergonomic chair for $200 with the same or even better quality. So make your research before you purchase.
Because there are a lot of different re-brands on the market. Gaming is a huge industry and everybody wants to make their money.
So a lot of gaming chairs are quite cheap standard models, manufactured in china, and the gaming company just slaps their logo on it to sell it at the double or triple price.
So when you find multiple chairs that look identical but just differentiate by the logo of the companies, stay away. You can get the same chair from a different company for less.
Nevertheless, you can also get great chairs with the same functionalities as a $500 classic ergonomic chair for half the price.
Trying It Out Can Be Difficult
Here is a real problem. A lot of people (including myself) like to try out sitting furniture. No matter if I buy a new sofa or desk chair, I really like to try it out first and get the feel of it.
But there are very rare occasions you can do that. I don’t know any furniture store selling gaming chairs, you get them mostly online.
The only rare occasion would be a video games fair.
Thus it can happen that you order a gaming chair, assemble it, and then feel uncomfortable in it.
Given the goal of gaming chairs to be ergonomically designed for comfort, it’s kind of unlikely that you’ll feel uncomfortable, but it’s still possible there will be something you won’t like about it.
Now in the days of online shopping, you’ll always have the option to send it back to Amazon or the manufacturer you choose, but you’ll need to disassemble and repackage the chair first.
So make sure to pick a reputable manufacturer with an easy return policy. You can never go wrong with Amazon for that scenario.
But There’s Even More
A lot of people who get a gaming chair for the first time, also sit ergonomically for the first time.
That also happens with regular office chairs. Here’s the temporary problem with that. You won’t like it at first!
If you don’t trust me, just read some chair reviews for Herman Miller chairs and you’ll find a lot of people mention this issue.
When your body is used to a certain sitting position, even if it’s a bad one, it’ll feel unnatural and uncomfortable sitting in an ergonomic chair at first. Your body will have to adjust.
In the meantime, it’s totally normal to feel a little sore and uncomfortable. So don’t send your new gaming chair back right away, when it feels a little awkward in the beginning. Test it extensively for at least 2-3 weeks before you’re making a decision.
Gaming Chairs for Console
Gaming chairs come basically in two different kinds. On the one side, they are designed as racing-style gaming chairs with a base or foot. On the other side, there are floor rockers and bean bags designed mostly for console gamers.
If you’re intending to get a chair for PC gaming you should pick one with wheels to move around quickly and stand up easily from your desk.
If you’re intending to get a gaming chair for your console I highly recommend checking out some floor rockers with a built-in sound system that will improve your gaming experience tremendously.
Some of them are even foldable so you can save up some space and get them out of the way. But there is no better option than a foldable gaming chair for console players.
So are gaming chairs worth it for console? Totally!
Will A Gaming Chair Make You A Better Gamer?
Nope, a gaming chair will not make you a better gamer, as shoes don’t make a better runner. You may game more comfortably but it won’t support your aiming or any other or skills.
The only way to improve those is by practice the game you want to improve in.
But one of the things you should think about: You’ll look 100% more like a pro when gaming!
Need help to pick one?
Now we’re far enough in our elaboration if it’s worth it getting a gaming chair. It’s totally dependent on the reasons you wanna get one.
It won’t improve your gaming skills at all, but it’s a fairly priced option for an ergonomic chair that looks uniquely awesome in comparison to classic desk chairs.
Because you can’t try one out before buying, because they’re mostly sold online, make sure to read the reviews and check the buyer images. Pick one with some options to adjust the armrests, tilt, and lumbar support of the chair and you’re good to go.
If you need help to pick one, whether it’s a pc gaming chair or one for a console, check out our article about gaming chairs in which we cover both.
Conclusion – Are Gaming Chairs Worth It?
All in all, it’s always your own decision if it’s worth it or not, regarding your reasons to buy one or not. Basically, gaming chairs are very much like classic ergonomic chairs in terms of functionality but they come in this awesome racing seat style.
- Do you want to get one only because of the ergonomics? Then I’d say it’s not totally worth it because there are other options. You can get ergonomic office chairs for a fair price, but a gaming chair will fulfill that purpose as well.
- Do you want to get a gaming chair because of the design? Hell yeah, it’ll pretty cool and pro-like.
- Do you want to get one because you think you’ll be a better gamer? Sorry to disappoint you, but no chair will improve your gaming skills, that just takes practice. But sitting more comfortably can help you relax while gaming. Sitting on a crappy chair for hours and feeling the numbness crawling up your leg and your butt can be distracting. But you still need to learn the game to improve.
So mostly gaming chairs are for people who want to have a proper ergonomic chair, but also in this unique design.
Now it’s up to you. Check out some gaming chairs and see if you can find the right one for your needs.