2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-11-27 05:39
Frequent drivers often complain of back pain. In order to avoid discomfort, you should pay attention to the seat and seating position when buying a car.
By Heiko Haupt
Get in, turn the ignition key and drive off - that's how every car journey begins. One thing is often forgotten: the seat and seating position determine how relaxed the occupants will be. In the case of frequent drivers in particular, permanent pain and back problems are not infrequently linked to sitting in the car. Sometimes the only thing that helps is the use of an expensive retrofit seat, which can no longer be accommodated as easily as it once was.
Firm upholstery required
"With the standard seats used in the vehicles, it can still be assumed that 95 percent are not optimally adapted to the requirements of the people," says Detlef Detjen from the Healthy Back Campaign (AGR) in Selsingen (Lower Saxony). Hubert Paulus from the ADAC technology center in Landsberg (Bavaria) explains what is wrong: Many seats are “still not sufficient, for example because they are too softly upholstered. A seat should support the body »- but that is precisely what the soft upholstery does not do.
"Firm upholstery is a prerequisite for healthy sitting," says Frank Essig from the seat manufacturer Recaro in Kirchheim (Baden-Württemberg). "For many people, however, the first time they sit down on a firm seat is associated with an uncomfortable feeling." Anyone who values sitting healthy in the car should therefore not only rely on the first impression.
When buying, according to Detlef Detjen, attention should also be paid to the shape of the seat - when viewed from the side, the backrest should have a slight S-shape for a spine-friendly design. Hubert Paulus also recommends the so-called lumbar support, which supports the lumbar vertebra area with its adjustment options.
The height of the backrest is also important. The AGR recommends seat backs that are not surmounted by the back. A height adjustment of the seat is a must - not only because of the driver's view, but also with regard to the pelvic position and thus the curvature of the spine. It is also advisable to adjust the incline of the seat to allow the thighs to rest correctly.
Lateral support important
Another important factor is the issue of lateral support, which is still mainly associated with a sporty driving style. In fact, lateral support is also useful for normal drivers, says Paulus: "The body is better held in the seat when cornering." If the seat has hardly any lateral support, the driver has to compensate for this by pressing against it with his body and holding onto the steering wheel.
In spite of everything, frequent drivers with back problems are often not happy with the standard seats. You only have the choice of ordering the more elaborate seats offered by the manufacturers for a surcharge - or retrofitting an ergonomically shaped seat. Retrofitting is not as easy as it used to be. Before the side airbags were deployed, it was usually sufficient to mount a seat console on which the retrofit seat could be placed. Today airbags are usually integrated into the side rests of the seats - and nobody should be without them. "But retrofit seats with universal airbags have also been available for some time," says Essig. The integrated airbags are then connected to the car electronics - so that you can enjoy the safety you are used to when you sit healthy. (dpa)
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