This page covers everything you need to know about extra tall office chairs for tall people. As with other manufactured objects, office chairs tend to be too small for tall people. This can be rather uncomfortable. Worse, it can gradually lead to injury. The solution is to either get a more suitable office chair or modify an existing office chair for tall people. Raising your desk and monitor to suitable heights is also important. All this is covered on this page. But if want to cut to the chase, then check out the four items below. These can vastly improve workstations and office chairs for tall people.
Finding Tall Office Chairs for Tall People
A tall office chair for tall people should have a higher seat, a longer seat pan, a taller back, and a larger and higher lumbar curve. That’s right, the most luxurious chair in the world is trash to us unless the measurements suit us. The question is: Where do you find a tall friendly chair?
If you search the web for tall chairs for tall people, you might initially get your hopes up; there are tons of listings. What you’ll quickly notice though is that these are all about chairs for big and tall people, not simply tall people. And in reality, these are primarily intended for people who are moderately big and moderately tall (slightly over-sized people). This being said, tall people may still somewhat prefer big and tall chairs over standard office chairs. Below are a few big and tall office chairs.
Of all the big and tall chairs out there, the Herman Miller Aeron Large (C) is probably the best office chair for tall people. It is said to be suitable for heights up 6′6″. And in fact, it is the chair that is mentioned the most in the various tall forums. I myself (6′7″) have sat in one and thought it fairly decent. These chairs have a plethora of adjustments, and perhaps this is why they can accommodate a wide variety of body shapes and sizes.
And what about office chairs specifically for tall people, you ask? I’ve searched and searched and have only come across one chair that claims to be specifically for tall people (drafting chairs don’t count!). That is the BodyBilt Stretch Ergonomic Chair (J2509 and J3509). It is intended for people 6′ and up, but no upper height limit is specified. Reviews are hard to find and I haven’t personally tested this one out. But the specifications do look good.
Yet another option, if you have the cash, is a custom office chair for tall people. There are a variety of companies that say they can do custom. Most of the time, however, this is more to do with materials and minor tweaks and not overall dimensions. An exception is Life Form Chairs, who claim they can do custom sizing. If you’re looking for the ultimate tall office chair, this might just be the way to go.
Modifying Office Chairs for Tall People
If you can’t find a suitably tall office chair or you simply don’t want to shell out the dough, you might instead consider modifying your existing office chair for tall people. There are a few different modifications you can make:
Raising the Seat
The most straight forward modification is to increase the seat height. The easiest way to do this is with extra large casters, including the 4″ ones below. But if this doesn’t get you enough additional seat height, then another option is to swap in a longer cylinder. These can be found in a variety of lengths all the way up to drafting stool size.
Using Back Supports
The curvatures of standard chair backs don’t match up well with the taller persons natural spinal curvatures. In particular, lumbar supports are too low and not big enough. One solution is to use something like an Obis Form. While these too are designed for average height people, you might be able to adjust it to suit your back. There are also inflatable bladders that offer more adjustability. And of course a simple pillow can also often do the trick.
Rebuilding Office Chairs for Tall People
If all of the above fails you, you might consider rebuilding a standard office chair to make it tall friendly. It is often possible to remove the seat pan and re-position it further forward or swap in a custom built one. Similarly, an entirely new back can be fashioned. I actually took a shot at a custom chair back myself. It consisted of a sheet of plywood, some high density insulation I carved to suit my spine’s curvatures, some carpet padding, and a canvas covering. It was a rather interesting project I’ll tell you more about in a future post.
Desks for Tall People
The best tall office chairs for tall people in the world won’t do you much good if your desk is too low. And as with chairs, desks tend not to be made for tall people. But desks are even easier to raise than chairs. There are all kinds of risers out there, or you can hack it with some 2x4s or cinder blocks. And of course there are sit stand desks too with loads of adjustability. Yet another option is to simply put a raised platform on top of your desk for your mouse and keyboard. Similarly, there are all kinds of monitor stands and arms out there to raise your monitor.
In general, there are endless ways for the tall person to get their joints into an ergonomically suitable configuration, you just have to find one that works for you. My own personal favorite setup is a DIY drafting stool coupled with a DIY standing height desk, allowing me to move quickly back and forth between sitting and standing, for cheap!
Basic Computer Ergonomic Recommendations for All Heights
This final section covers some basic computer workstation ergonomic recommendations that apply to all people regardless of height. These consider the whole desk/chair/monitor/keyboard and mouse setup as if just one element is poorly positioned, injury becomes far more likely.
There’s a variety of schools of thought on how computer workstations should be set up. As an example, below are some common points (United States Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration and Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety).
- Hands, wrists, and forearms are straight, in-line, and roughly parallel to the floor
- Head is level or tilted slightly downwards, forward facing, and balanced. Generally it is in-line with the torso
- The monitor should be positioned between sixteen and twenty-eight inches from the face and such that the center of the monitor is slightly below fifteen degrees from horizontal. Make sure the top of the monitor is not above eye level
- Shoulders are relaxed and upper arms hang normally at the side of the body
- Elbows stay in close to the body and are bent between ninety and one hundred twenty degrees
- Feet are fully supported by the floor
- Back is fully supported with appropriate lumbar support when sitting vertical or leaning back slightly
- Thighs and hips are supported by a well-padded seat and generally parallel to the floor
- Knees are about the same height as the hips with the feet slightly forward
Finally, we would all do good to remember that sitting all day, regardless of the chair, isn’t good for us. A static posture is hard on the joints as well as the cardiovascular system. Tall people face enough additional health hazards as it is, so let’s get up and put those long limbs to good use!
If a desk is too short and it has threaded feet it can be raised. Take the foot to some place like home depot. Grab a threaded rod of the same diameter. Next get threaded rod connectors. You will need a dremel or somthing to cut the threaded rod. Put the foot and rod in the threaded connector. Once you figure out the correct height Locktite or glue can be used to give a secure connection. Now it can be screwed back into the desk. If you want to make it higher still, nuts can be added on top the threaded connector for stability.
Finally an article that tells you the truth about all those bogus big chair ads on the internet
I’m pleased you appreciate this! It’s astounding I could only find one office chair that is specifically for tall people…
Any leads on a big and tall club chair for my living room? I’m 6′ 6″ and 300#. Thank you
I hadn’t ever heard the term club chair until you mentioned it. I’ll have to look into these at some point. If you find anything good, please comment here, thanks!
Thank you for the work put in this post! Been scouring through the internet in search for a suitable chair, but there is pretty much nothing for 2m+ tall mongrels.
Has anyone here ever had any experience with ordering a custom office/executive chair? If so, where did you order it, how much did it cost and how well did it go?
Just like everything else in life, all of these “big & tall” chairs seem to just focus on “big”. Even when “tall” is a consideration, it is only about height (leg, arm, back. There is an important aspect that seems to be missed by everyone…chair stability.
I am 6’8″ with a 38-40″ inseam, this means i have a fairly long torso. Having a long torso means the center of gravity is higher for me than someone with a shorter torso, when i am seated. If I allow the seat to lean back, that center of gravity moves back towards the casters. For most people, this is not an issue as the center of gravity remains within the stability design of the chair. for me, it gets perilously close to exceeding the design of the chair and just flipping.
Only 2 ways I can think of that would remedy this issue (aside from not leaning back, which causes mu butt to slide forward) are:
1 position the seat forward on the post
2 wider base
Neither of these options are provided in the online specs of the chairs.
Great point, I hadn’t thought about that. Another potential solution would be to add a whole lot of weight to the base somehow. And you could always figure out some way to add an additional wheel. Neither of these options would be easy to do and still have it look decent though… I’ll keep pondering this one.
Good article, thanks for putting in the effort.
Unfortunately, none of the chairs listed are available in the UK right now. My issue isn’t with height off the ground, but the back rest. I need a chair that supports my back, not one that just tilts because even in maximum adjustment, my back is higher than the point the chair’s backrest tension operates through. It is hard to explain, but anybody over 6’ will be familiar with the experience of tilting back and finding themselves falling out of the chair.
This was about the 4th result, after ads, on google. The previous three appeared to be written from the perspective that tall meant 5’10” and without actually trying the chairs (or reading the dozens of customer reviews from unsatisfied tall people) so thanks for actually knowing your subject matter!
Glad you like it. As far as the tilting back, I’ve wondered if there is a wider base that can be bought, I might try to look into that at some point. Made one could be modified to have longer arms or extra weight added to it…
Hopefully Google will someday be able to better recognize when a subject matter is known 🙂
So this https://amzn.to/2Yd8RTW looks good for me at 6’4 —around 38″ from seat flat to top of headrest. I need the head rest as I’m 37″ from top of head to derriere in seated position. Hard to find chairs like these for tall people with a suitable headrest. Also considered https://bit.ly/2Q4NdwO but will try the amazon one. A review on Amazon says a 6’3/250lb guy loves his and it takes up to 280lb
Hope it helps others.
Check out the Aloria by Oak Hollow Furniture, it is a great chair for taller individuals, even up to 7 ft! I am only 6′ 1″, but the chair was perfect for me and I have it on the lowest height setting and am not using the tallest cylinder that they sell. Highly recommend this chair for taller individuals!
My struggle is everything “Tall” is like 6′ 3″ – 6′ 6″… but thats not tall. Im 6′ 10″ & 260 lbs & I can almost never find any reviews of anything (in this case office chair) by anyone close to my height.
I have yet to find an office chair that really works. I am considering a Herman Miller Aeron Size C, but the chart stops at 6′ 6″ & the extra 4″ can make a big difference where my shoulder will it on the back & if any of the aftermarket headrests will do any good at all.
I am hoping someone closer to 6′ 10″ will way in on their findings.
Yup, at that height it is a real predicament. I think you have to be willing to DIY some things. Maybe the drafting stool cylinder on a regular chair could work. And somehow modify the back and seat pan to better suit your longer thighs and higher spine curvatures.
I’m 6’9″ and about 300# right now. I absolutely agree that tall is 6’6″ or taller. A little over 10 years ago (maybe longer) I saved up and got a HM Aeron Size C and love it. I’ve had work done on the base somewhere along the line but the chair itself is a trooper. The mesh weave on the lower piece does give way over time and am currently looking for HM certified repair shops around Seattle to see if life can’t be pumped into this thing again. I’d rather throw $200-300 at this thing then be disappointed with some other chair. Hopefully this works out again. YMMV.
After some hunting in the theater seating I always wind up back to the HM Eames Lounge Chair & Ottoman, but at US$7000 it is not an option. I did just found another company that makes a knock-off of the Eames lounger, and they have a “premium tall version”.
I’d at least sit in a HM Aeron chair for yourself if you can. Back when I bought it it was $800 + misc to get it to my apartment. Today they are US$2k.
Good luck, there is good stuff out there that isn’t entirely disappointing. Most of the time we gotta pay a little more, but usually quality comes with that.
I just tried out a Herman Miller Aeron Size C. No good. Not deep enough. Your blood will be cut off just over the half of your upper leg. At least if you are like me 6.6. Pity because it was my last hope, and I must say it was the best chair I have tested.
In theory they should also be able to fix it quite easily by creating a deeper seating. But the market is not large enough maybe? Tall people are used to get used to have to be satisfied with sub-optimal goods?
Thanks for your input, Rob. Glad to hear you agree the Aeron Size C is our option when it comes to stock office chairs for tall people. But I too agree that even it leaves a lot to be desired. The issue of too short a seat pan, I suppose it could be mounted further forward. But then you’d have a gap at the back. I’ve often thought of DIYing a custom seat pan, hopefully I’ll get around to it someday and post here…
After much trial and error I finally came up with a solution for long-legged (36-40” inseam) very tall 6’4”+ users! Before reading further, please put aside all notions of what may or may not be “proper” looking. Trust me, once you sit in this chair with my recommended mods, you won’t care. And actually it still looks cool, so don’t worry.
Here’s what you’ll need:
– AK Racing Max Gaming Chair
– Armrest pads to cover and raise up the 4D armrests
– Ergonomic back rest
– Neck rest
– (Optional) 4” diameter caster wheels
– (Optional) 6” to 8” replacement gas cylinder
The AK is the only chair on the market with a true 22” seat depth, more than Herman Miller ‘C’, way more than Secret Lab Titan XL. This was a godsend, as ALL other Big/Tall chairs lacked sufficient seat depth. Even the Oak Hollow Aloria (my 5’6” wife loves it though).
That was the clincher. You can get it any chair high as you want with either oversized wheels, replacement cylinders or both, but seat depth is non-customizable past the furthest settings of the chair which were never far enough. Only this goofy ‘gaming chair’ can accommodate those of us with long thighs (not just ‘long legs’).
I will follow with links to the actual products. But once you assemble this, all other office chairs – even the high-end ones – will feel like church pews from now on!
I’ve sat in a Herman Miller chair, and it was a torture device. Just give me a straight backed chair with NO curve. Almost all chairs I see listed for big and tall people are made for big people only. How can it be for tall people when it’s got a headrest at a certain height, with a recessed area for the shoulders to fit in?
Great article, thanks for all of the tips! I’m 6’1″, so not that tall, but I went with the Aloria office chair by Oak Hollow Furniture. It has worked out well for me! I would encourage others to try it out!