Is there an organisation that rates the ergonomics of automobile seats?
For quite some time I've wondered about the support
provided by the seats
in today's automobiles. Specifically, I would like to know
if there is an
organization or individual who rates automobiles based on
"orthopedically correct" their seats are. -- Peter
RAY: Not that we could find, Peter. Here's what we DID find
TOM: We spoke to the International Chiropractic
Association, and they
recommend Geo Metros and Ford Aspires to everyone.
Apparently, those little
sardine cans really stir up the chiropractic business (just
RAY: The ICA actually says that people with back problems
should look for
seats with adjustable lumbar supports. No seat in
particular stands out,
they say, but it's important to find a seat that supports
the normal curve
of your back (to keep the discs in the back separated).
Seats that allow
you to slouch are the ones that create problems.
TOM: They also say that a softer, cushier ride is better
than a hard,
pounding ride for people with back trouble, although that
doesn't mean a
soft, cushy seat is better than a firm seat.
RAY: If your car does not have an adjustable lumbar
support, the ICA
recommends a product called Obus Forme, which is a movable
place behind you. A cushion you already have around the
house, or can buy
locally, may do just as good a job.
TOM: I'll tell you what we'll do, Peter. Since a lot of
people have back
problems and nobody seems to collect this information,
we'll try to collect
it for you. So if any of you (our readers) have back
problems and have
found one car whose seat is particularly good or
particularly bad for
people with back problems, let us know about it.
RAY: Those of you with access to the World Wide Web, post a
note on the
bulletin board at our web site (http: //cartalk.com); the
rest of you write
to us in care of this paper. If we get any helpful
information, we'll share
it with you.