This blog post is the final part of our series focusing on Herman Miller’s ergonomic seating portfolio. Our previous post discussed the Mirra and Celle chairs. It is now time for Embody and SAYL to shine!
Embody: the First “Health-Positive” Chair
The Embody chair was designed by (Minnesota native) Jeff Weber and the late Bill Stumpf. There are three main innovations at work in the Embody ergonomics: Pixilated Support™, the “kicker”, and Backfit™ system. All three support dynamic movement and spinal health (hence the term “health-positive”!).
Stumpf and Weber were inspired by a piece of furniture most of us use for about as long as we sit a work chair: a bed mattress! A decent mattress distributes pressure evenly, and if one person moves or turns, the other is not bothered by it. This concept was translated to both the back and seat of the Embody.
Pixilated Support™ is a matrix of points in the seat and back of the Embody chair that evenly distributes the pressure exerted on the user’s body. The neutralization of pressure reduces the circulation reduction that happens at high pressure points.
When the user sets their Embody’s tilt at one of the ten settings to best match their weight, the “kicker” allows the user to stretch beyond that point when needed. This supports movement and blood flow throughout the work day.
With Backfit™, a flexible backrest system adjustable at 9.3 degrees, a user can set the Embody to support a curved or straight back. The curved back setting will recline 9.3 degrees more than the straight back setting, keeping the S-curve supported and the visual horizon level.
Check out Herman Miller’s Embody Experience!
SAYL: Life Unframed
The SAYL chair, designed by Yves Behar, was inspired by the famous San Fransisco Golden Gate Bridge. The suspension tower structure and mechanics were mimicked in this chair by using the Y-Tower to suspend a 3D-intelligent back material. The material has tension areas to support transition areas between the thoracic and lumbar and also the lumbar and sacrum. The hinge points built into the back help rotate the pelvis forward, keeping the circulation healthy throughout the work day. All of these details continue providing “health-positive” attributes and allow for a completely frameless back design.
The back material can also be upholstered and still have the 3D-intelligent characteristics!
Can you see the similarity in back shape between the Embody and SAYL chairs? The narrow upper back offers a full range of movement to the seated user’s upper body. This further accommodates movement throughout the day, which improves blood flow.