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Understanding the difference between student chair designs


There are many different options facing educators when purchasing student furniture now. When it comes to chairs, there are three designs that really dominate the space; the traditional four-legged chair, and then the alternative designs of cantilever chairs and swivel-based chairs.
Which design is right for your environment? Each chair has its own strengths and benefits to schools:
Four-legged chair
The classical look and structure of a student chair is, of course, the four-legged chair. There’s a reason this has been a standard approach to chair design for so many years; a four-legged chair is fundamentally stable, safe, and cheap to produce.
The balance between the legs mean that the chair won’t simply topple if a student shifts their weight on it. And the chairs will last for many years, as weight is distributed evenly across the four legs. That weight distribution also means that “fit” is less of an immediate concern and the chair can support a wider range of height and weight profiles.
Cantilever chair
A cantilever chair differs from a standard four-legged chair in that it has just one leg, while retaining the same approximate shape as a four-legged chair. How does that work? The chair’s shape is bent into a “square” at the base, with the front end of the square open, and the sides extending up to become the chair’s arm rests (the same design can be used in the reverse, too).
Cantilever chairs in the classroom present are harders to tip backwards, which is something that some students will always be inclined to do, making them safer. They’re also very comfortable, ergonomic chairs that have a “floating” feeling when sat in.
Swivel-based chair
There’s a reason that swivel-based chairs are the standard in office and work environments; they’re designed for peak ergonomic value and use of space. With a swivel-based chair, it’s easy to turn and re-orient yourself based on where you need to face. Rather than get up and physically turn the chair, a student simply needs to… swivel. This makes it ideal for classrooms which are more dynamic than simply having each student facing the front of the room.
Swivel-based chairs allow schools to use larger desks and work areas for students, as the swivelling action gives the student access to more space around them. In the modern learning environment, where computers and books work side-by-side, this extra space is important for the efficiency of the workspace.
To discuss which kind of chair is ideal for your school environment, contact the team at Abax Kingfisher – we’ve been specialists at getting the right furniture into schools for many years now.

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