Today we will bring you behind the scene and tell about how BeneSit has involved extreme users in the development process. This was done in the late prototyping phases which still made it possible for us to include changes based on the findings from the test.
But first… What are extreme users? According to Think Design an “extreme user” is a person who exhibits sharpened traits of the target group. This person can therefore provide great insights into the target group and, if done individually, it can shed light on some very specific concerns for each extreme user that should be accommodated for.
How we involved extreme users
BeneSit have been lucky enough to be able to involve several extreme users throughout the development process and here we will focus on one specific extreme user testing.
This BeneSit user agreed to participate in a testing period focussing on the density of the seat of the BeneSit chair. She worked entirely from home and chose to use the BeneSit chair over other back-chairs and regular office chairs. The testing period was semi-structured with several online interviews and the user chose to use the BeneSit chair daily for 3 months.
Between the interviews, the extreme user tested out different types of seats for the BeneSit chair. This allowed for alterations after each test and we were able to provide a new prototype based on the insights.
Results of extreme user involvement
The testing period and continuous dialog with the extreme user resulted in unique insights which we were able to incorporate into the product design. This was all done in an iterative design process allowing for a deep understanding of the user needs.
With the BeneSit chair, we have used classic shapes, a simple construction and high quality materials. This gives the chair a design that can be used in many different situations – both in terms of visual expression and functional needs.
Be inspired by the many possibilities that exist with the BeneSit chair. Above we have gathered some examples of how differently the chair can be used – only the imagination sets the limits!
Remember that you can design your own BeneSit chair, both as a private person and as a company or organization. That way, we can create exactly the look that fits your environment!
Read more about customized BeneSit chairs here and contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.
Did you know that you can design your very own BeneSit chair?
We want to support the use of BeneSit chairs in a great variety of use scenarios and interior design expressions. Therefore, we offer custom design where you can choose between 24 colors for both the top and the bottom section of the chair (see the pictures).
You can see all 24 colors here and on the picture above.
Order your custom designed BeneSit chairs via this link.
Custom design chairs are the same price as standard chairs and delivery time is up to approx. 8-12 weeks.
A BeneSit chair in size L used at a high kitchen table
Many people might think that a good sitting position requires a good chair. And we don’t disagree with that. But it definitely also requires a good table!
In BeneSit, we are often in dialogue with customers who want to use the BeneSit chair in a work situation. Then we ask about their work setup, as it is important for us to get a holistic picture of what it looks like when they are working.
Through our collaboration with an occupational therapist, statements from experts and from our own experience, we have found that sitting tall with your knees below hip height and having an open hip is essential for a good posture.
To achieve this good sitting position, many people will find that the usual fixed office desks and dining tables are too low. The height-adjustable desk has made it possible to do personal adjustments and actually made it possible for office workers to choose the right chair for themselves, rather than choosing the right chair for the table.
We therefore always recommend using a height-adjustable desk, but also know that many people don’t have access to it in a home working situation. In this context, we want to inspire you to think a little “out of the box” and raise the computer to the ideal height (for example, by using a thick book or similar) in order to still be able to choose the chair that fits you.
Read more about the BeneSit chair and back pain here.
Here you can see the previous seat to the left (red chair) and the new seat to the right (petrol chair)
Today we want to share a little peek “behind the scenes” and into our production. We have been working on further developing the seat of the BeneSit chair and are now launching the new and improved seat!
The new seat…
💚 is moulded foam which minimizes waste
☁️ is made of highest quality foam
⭐️ provides more comfort
⬜️ has a more streamlined look
We refer to our instagram profile where we have shared a small video showing the previous and new seat up close.
We look forward to hearing your opinion on the new seat!
BeneSit rethinks the concept of “chairs” and the way we sit
If you were to ask a great number of people how they would define “a chair” the answer would probably be something along the lines of “something you can sit on that has four legs”.
We have a clear association connected to the word “chair” and therefore it is very understandable when people need a minute to figure out that the BeneSit is also a chair – despite it not having four legs.
Developing for the human body
An example of someone who is also rethinking the way we sit is Niels Diffrient. We have been inspired by his TED Talk where he shares his story about how he developed a new office chair based on a fundamental data set – the human body.
He explains how the chair should do as much for office people as humanly and mechanistically possible and that no 20-page manual should be necessary. He says that “…the one thing they don’t need, is a chair that interferes with their main reason for sitting there”.
These points fit perfectly with the BeneSit vision of a good office chair. However, when we express that the chair should do as much for office people as possible, we probably mean it in a different way than Niels Diffrient.
Rather than supporting the person from head to toe and therefore helping the person to avoid engaging the body, we want the chair to support an active way of sitting. We believe that, in the long run, it is more helpful for office people to be supported in incorporating subtle movement in their sitting rather than “taking away” the movement and engagement of their sitting posture.
You can read more about the principles of the BeneSit chair here.
What are your thoughts? Should office chairs “take away” movement or initiate movement?
When discussing work space design, sitting positions and back pain we often think of adults. However, children also spend much of their time sitting down.
Today, we want to share some inspirational points from the article “Children’s behaviour and the design of school furniture” by Knight & Noyes. They explain that furniture is used extensively during childhood, which is a vital period of human physical development. A study even shows that children aged 13-16 were seated for 78.7% of their time in the classroom.
This illustrates the importance of well-designed school furniture. To ensure this we must consider the tasks children carry out at school to be able to identify the functions that are needed from the furniture.
School furniture should support the children’s tasks
The article explains how the school furniture should support the two major tasks of school children; attending to the teacher and writing/drawing at the working surface. Furthermore the furniture should ensure that the children stay in one place (to not distract each other) as well as facilitate learning through a comfortable and stress-free workstation.
Knight & Noyes explain how it is generally accepted that school furniture should be designed to accommodate movement while sitting. They present this as a paradox as they have just established that school furniture also should ensure that children stay in the same place.
We find this “paradox” very interesting and believe that this is exactly what we try to solve with the BeneSit chair. We do agree that school furniture should minimize distracting interactions and accommodate movement, but we do not agree that one excludes the other.
The BeneSit chair creates a workstation which – through small movements – makes the child concentrate for longer and thereby also minimizes the distraction of other children. “Staying in the same place” and “movement” should not be seen as a paradox but rather two coexisting elements which create the basis for great children’s furniture.
Our BeneSit chair in the size Small is primarily developed for children who need higher movement freedom when carrying out seated work. You can read more about the BeneSit chair here.
At BeneSit, we often talk about functionality and aesthetics. It is an important priority for us that these two elements are integrated in our product.
According to this article published by Cambridge University Press, functionality refers to the performance of a product, while aesthetics represents the visual and ergonomic appeals of the product.
In our opinion, it is difficult – if not impossible – to create a successful product where only one of these elements is present. They must therefore coexist to meet both the practical and visual needs of the user.
The BeneSit chair has been designed with a starting point in functionality and through its simple construction and the few selected materials, the aesthetic is created. We believe that the two elements support each other, creating a better product overall.
What role do you think functionality and aesthetics play in the development of a product?
Several times we have had interesting conversations with customers about our choice to design the BeneSit chair in four fixed heights rather than having one adjustable chair.
Of course, an adjustable chair can have many advantages, as one chair can be adapted to users with a large height difference.
However, there are several reasons why we have chosen the fixed heights of the BeneSit chairs, and we want to share them with you here.
When is the “correct” sitting position achieved?
During the development of the BeneSit chair, we were in close dialogue with talented occupational therapist Mette Boye. It quickly became clear that the correct sitting position is achieved by having more than 90 degrees between the upper body and the thighs. This meant that the correct chair height for one person would be a range rather than one specific height. In addition, we found two chair heights (which we now call M and L) that would be ideal for about 85-90% of the population. Later, we decided to introduce heights S and XL to ensure that we accommodate people of all heights.
Weight of the chair
A clear advantage of having fixed heights is to avoid heavy mechanical parts in the construction of the chair. This means that we use fewer materials, but also that the weight of the chair is only a few kilos, making it easy to move around and use in different scenarios.
The design aspect
In addition, the absence of height-adjustable mechanical parts was a high-priority design decision. This ensures a simple construction and a minimalistic design, which also distinguishes the BeneSit chair from other more traditional office chairs.
The BeneSit chair creates a homey and flexible work environment
Following on from last week’s blog post on trends in hybrid working and working from home, this week we’ll be delving into the principles of “resimercial” design.
The word “resimercial” combines “residencial” and “commercial” and Work Design Magazine predicts that this concept will increasingly influence the way we design office landscapes and workplaces going forward.
As Work Design Magazine describes here, the concept of “resimercial design” is about incorporating the comforts of the home environment into our work environment. The aim of this is to make the workplace a more comfortable place, which is a key factor in employee well-being and health. People are increasingly becoming the source of companies’ value – so it is important that the workplace supports its employees both mentally and physically.
Specifically, ‘resimercial design’ can be incorporated by using domestic artefacts such as lamps and carpets, adding multi-sensory elements such as plants, music and scents or by incorporating flexible ways of working. Flexibility in the workplace, for example, can be achieved by having flexible meeting spaces and offering employees alternative seating options.
Read more about our customized BeneSit chairs, which are ideal for companies that want to create more flexible working environments and focus more on employee well-being.
What would you implement in your company to create a more homey atmosphere?