8 reasons why do people swing on their chairs

  • By: Sam Shaw
  • Date: August 24, 2021
  • Time to read: 3 min.

Do you know why people swing on their chairs? Why do they seem so at peace when they are doing it? Why is it that, while sitting down for a meeting or conference call, some people will start swinging back and forth in their chairs?

Why do people swing on their chairs?

There’s no shortage of theories as to why do people swing on their chairs. For your interest and information, we have summarized below all the available hypotheses and theories on why do people swing on their chairs.

1. It helps relieve boredom!

Although it may appear surprising to some, experts believe that swinging back and forth on an office chair helps relieve boredom by engaging the muscles. This is especially true for people who have the kind of job that requires them to stay on the chair for long hours.

Although there are a few researchers who disagree with this idea, it is still a popular notion that people swing on their chairs to counter boredom.

2. It gives a feeling of safety and comfort

A well-known expert in ergonomic design Dr. Joel Murphy has been studying this problem for a long time and he’s come up with some answers. He believes that the rocking motion does indeed help create a sense of safety and comfort.

Some psychologists believe that swinging on a chair gives the illusion of being in the lap of the mother where the mother pampers the baby by slowly swinging her arms. This is an interesting idea and has been backed up by quite a few psychologists.

3. It helps to concentrate better

Many studies have shown that swinging on an office chair provides physical stimulation which can, in turn, lead to better concentration during meetings. This is probably because after sitting for long hours, swinging on a chair can help stimulate blood circulation.

4. It’s a way to cheer up

Some people believe that swinging on a chair is an expression of joy or happiness. It may be because it mimics childhood memories where parents would swing children as they sing songs, like this: “Rock-a-bye baby”.

5. Muscular imbalance in the legs

In addition to all these theories and hypotheses, some experts also think that it could be due to muscular imbalance in the legs which causes them to alternately contract and relax with each movement.

6. It mimics riding a bike!

Dr. Murphy says this is because swinging mimics other activities like riding a bike or foraging through the leaves on the ground with your childhood best friend: “You’re using very different parts of your body than you would sit at a desk,” he said.

7. It makes people more engaged

It’s no surprise then that Dr. Murphy found participants are more engaged when they swing back and forth rather than just sit still while listening to their boss talk about new plans for next year’s budget at work!

8. Relaxes back muscles

Some believe that after sitting on chairs for a few hours, swinging helps to relax the back muscles. Thus, people who do not get up from their office or work chairs to walk for a while have this rare opportunity to relax their back muscles by swinging on the chair.

Final thoughts

So what do you think? Do people swing on their chairs to release boredom, feel safe and comforted or just engage themselves better during meetings? Chances are that there’s more than one reason why so many office workers enjoy swinging back and forth in their chairs. Still, this is an interesting question! Let us know how long it takes for the meeting participants to get restless when they start rocking upfront. 🙂

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