Inclusive Ergonomics

Client: MUMA (Colombia)   /    Project developed with Curve ID Design Team

MUMA, a company well known in South-America as a pioneer in the improvement of the office environment, asked to design a distinctive, affordable task chair that would capture MUMA’s 63 years of experience in one iconic product.

The team of New York based designers were challenged to create the first ‘100% chair’ designed for the Latin Market. Our goal was to deliver the highest ergonomic performance for the most reasonable price, offering high comfort at a competitive price to emerging markets both national and international.

Every element of the chair has been developed to enhance the ‘In-gonomics’ concept (Inclusive ergonomic design for everyone). Using fluid curves the innovative back rest suspension pattern works in harmony with advanced materials; fusing clean aesthetics and smart engineering into an affordable and highly ergonomic product.

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The backrest integrates a lumbar and sacro-support adjustable in height and depth which adapts to the user’s needs, favoring a good posture of the pelvic zone – principle of a healthy posture in the workplace.

 

People spend about 9 years of their lives sitting in their offices, and 93% of the time they are in the office is spent in their work chairs. This reiterates the importance of making a good choice of chairs for the workplace, a product responsible with the human body. To feel comfortable, work efficiently and have good posture habits is necessary to have a chair that supports and follow your body, that suits the way you work, that will intuitively fit to the changes, which allows you to stay focused.

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We analyzed the office task chair market landscape and identified that most ergonomic centric chairs starting with a retail price range of $400 - $500, with the majority costing upwards of $600-$900. While this is a worthy investment, not all consumers can afford such a steep price.

To understand the process between getting the chair from manufacturer to end user. The team talked with the stakeholders. Internally at MUMA, we started with the manufacturing and engineering team, the design team, the sales and international sales department. We visited interior architects and buyers who are involved in the sales process. We then went to the final user, interviewing them to understand their perspectives and behavior in relation to the task chair and their working environment.

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Ingo-nomics. An Integrated solution

We used the design direction, Integrated Solution, as the basis for the overall chair design. The idea is to simplify the chair by integrating the back frame with the overall structure of the chair. Instead of having multiple pieces comprising as the framework for the back rest, we simplified the back rest into one single piece frame, thus reducing the manufactured parts and also the assembly time. The base , the mechanism, and the arm rest are “off-the-shelf” products, relying the design to the backrest, and investing resources to these areas.

The resulting frame gives the final design a more coherent look with the commercial parts; a back frame that is more integrated and interlocked with the rest of the chair.

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Every element of the Ingo chair has been developed in response to the design directions found during the research. The innovative backrest suspension pattern works in harmony with advanced materials, fusing clean aesthetics, smart engineering and low environmental impact into an affordable and highly ergonomic product.

 

Our goal: a chair that conveys a structural Integrity and comfort for one’s back. To understand exactly which portions of the backrest receives the most strain, we conducted several tests. The tests included good old trial and error testing through hand-crafted prototypes. Our findings clued us in on areas that the backrest will receive the most strain when an individual is seated. We rectified the situation by thickening the problematic areas and modified the geometry where necessary.