As truck drivers travel thousands, if not millions of miles, they might laugh to see a yellow caution sign on the roadside reading “Hazardous Sitting Conditions Ahead.”  But, instead of ahead on the road, maybe this sign is referring to you and YOUR back, hips and overall health.  The truth is, drivers spend many hours every day in the exact same position, where muscles, ligaments and vertebrae discs are continually under stress and pressure.  While for many years, people have neither put much thought into nor have they cared if a truck driver might permanently be injured by age 40 to 45.  The fact is, when reviewing OSHA’s injury list, truck drivers near the top for employees spending the most time away from work due to injury.

As this may appear to be doom and gloom, it really does not have to be.  In reality, seating companies have taken notice of this problem and people have changed the mindset of a seat is a seat.  A seat truly is not just a seat, if it is built with engineering and safety in mind.  A truck seat should not only be constructed for functionality, but rather should be built with Ergonomics in mind.  Ergonomics, as the dictionary defines is, “The applied science of equipment design, as for the workplace, intended to maximize productivity by reducing operator fatigue and discomfort.”   When evaluating truck seats, you should really look at how the seat is constructed and make sure the seat offers you a variety of flexibility to customize your riding conditions.

While some truck seats are still made with the “seat is a seat” mindset, there are other companies that have risen to a higher standard.  Sears and National have both done an exemplary job of providing features such as:  double-locking slides/isolators, internal end stops within the suspension, adjustable seat cushions and armrests, vibration reduction, and adjustable lumbar.  National has developed a truck seat with its proprietary BackCycler™ technology.  The BackCycler™ is an air driven, spinal motion system. The slow, pulsing action facilitates blood flow and reduces disc pressure.  Sears has its ever popular Elite 80 seat with many of the above features.  Truck seat features continue to improve and while these seats may appear expensive, the investment in a high quality, ergonomic seat, where you spend many hours every day, is much less expensive than back surgeries and a lifetime of chiropractic care.

See our next posting, as we’ll review various truck seat features and what the advantages of each are.  How tough seats are built to last.  Why are adjustable seat cushions and armrests important?  What are isolators – and why are they needed?  How can a seat keep a driver healthier and safer?  For additional information or if you would like these answers ahead of our posting, please feel free to contact United Group’s seating specialists at 800-223-7003 or email us at customerservice@industrialseats.com.

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