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Ergonomic Designs That Get To The Seat Of The Matter

Topics: Technology | Add A CommentBy admin | May 30, 2010

One could easily get the impression that the definition of “ergonomic” is “strange looking”.

You may be wondering why we’re featuring a photo of a guy’s butt resting on an HR Giger sculpture today. Well, first of all, it’s because of the fact that if we used a girl’s butt you’d think we were sexist. And second, it’s not an HR Giger sculpture, it’s an actual bicycle seat, called the Manta Saddle. The makers say it “changes the whole feel of being seated on a bicycle“. Which is what you would immediately think when you see it with no-one seated on it (see below). But in spite of its first butt-pinching impressions, it apparently eases pressure on the perineum, pudendal arteries, prostate, and nerves, minimizing biker butt. You may have noticed that “ergonomic” can usually be defined as “strange looking”. In spite of our bumpy, curvy bodies, we’ve designed an entire world out of hard angles, presumably because it’s historically been easier to fabricate things this way. Or do we just find it unsettling to the mind to surround ourselves with irregular, bulbous shapes? Who knows. Below are some images of other odd-looking ergonomic designs. Feel free to share if you know of more good examples.

Here’s the Manta Saddle with no-one sitting on it. Not too inviting, in my opinion!

Designer Peter Opsvik is known for unusual, but ergonomic chair designs. The Stokke Garden is said to be quite comfortable. Not sure where you’re meant to put your bum:

The Balans Femini also presents one with a bit of a mystery…

…until you see it being put to use properly:

You can sit on this if you like, but it’s actually a Wireless Ergonomic Mouse

The Ruby ergonomic rocking chair is kind of cool looking, but doesn’t give an immediate impression of comfort:

And neither the DataHand or the Combimouse look any more comfortable to me than a regular keyboard & mouse: