Herman Miller Lumbar Support vs. PostureFit

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If you are considering buying a Herman Miller Aeron chair, you have most likely encountered the two different lumbar support systems that are available. 

You may have also asked yourself, “Should I get the Lumbar Support pad or the PostureFit?”.

Back support is a crucial part of ergonomic chairs and a necessity for those who suffer from lower back pain

With its hefty price tag, the Aeron is an investment into your health and as such, it needs to be comfortable. Both of these systems have features that suit different needs. 

Below, we will discuss the qualities of both the Lumbar Support and the PostureFit. We will go over their design differences and compare their performance in five important categories.

Lumbar Support Pad

Pros:

  • Easy to install 
  • Effective spinal support
  • Less expensive than PostureFit
  • Available on remastered Aeron
  • Allows freedom of movement

Cons:

  • Depth is not adjustable
  • Incompatible with other lumbar systems
  • Doesn’t support sacrum

The Lumbar Support, which is designed specifically for Aeron chairs, comes in three different size options just like the Aeron. 

It is an oval-shaped, reversible pad that has a thick side (1 ¼ inches) and a thin side (¾ inch) for more or less support. Since the support system itself is not depth-adjustable, you can flip the pad to whatever side is most comfortable. 

For beginners, the Lumbar Support is more user-friendly and easier to install. It also allows freedom of movement for those who frequently change positions. 

There are currently two versions on the market. One is designed for the original Aeron chairs, and the more recent one is made for the remastered version with a sync-tilt function. The newer model has the same function as the first, but it is a bit more refined. 

PostureFit

Pros:

  • Supports sacrum and spine
  • Adjustable depth
  • Extremely supportive with proper fit
  • Easy to adjust
  • PostureFit SL fits the remastered Aeron chair
  • More stylish

Cons:

  • Height is not adjustable
  • Uncomfortable and ineffective without correct fit
  • Not interchangeable with Lumbar Support
  • Costs more
  • More difficult to install
  • More restrictive

The PostureFit system is designed to help your spine maintain a natural S-shape and provide total lower back support.

It features a large, X-shaped pad with an upper and lower section. The upper section supports the lumbar region, and the lower section supports the sacrum and the hips. The pad can tilt back and forth to adjust to your movements.

The PostureFit can be adjusted for depth, but it doesn’t move up and down. 

Unfortunately, if the support pads don’t hit you in the right spots because of your height, they can be uncomfortable and lose all their ergonomic benefits. It also is more restrictive and is best suited for people who stay in one position.

Although the original PostureFit system only fits the classic Aeron chair, the PostureFit SL is designed for the remastered model.

Because the PostureFit is not interchangeable with the Lumbar Support Pads, it is important to try them out before buying.

Detailed Comparison

Even though both support systems are designed for the Aeron chair, it can be difficult to know which one is best suited for you if you’re not well informed. 

Below, we look at how each system performs in five important areas that affect your checkbook, time, and health.

Installation

The two support systems require different steps for proper installation. 

The PostureFit is more complicated, involving screwing on parts and threading a cable through the back to the main piece. For those who are handy, this won’t be a problem. But for complete beginners without any tools, this could be a headache.

The Lumbar Support pad is very simple. It has “claws” on both sides that slide into grooves on either side of the backrest. No tools are required. This makes it much easier to replace when necessary.

Adjustability

When it comes to adjusting your back support while sitting in the chair, the PostureFit is much more convenient. 

It has a knob that you simply turn to move the pad in and out. The downside is that it cannot be moved up and down, which can be a problem for people if the pad doesn’t perfectly line up with their spine. 

The Lumbar Support is a bit harder to adjust because you have to reach behind you with both hands to manually move the pad up and down. 

You may even have to get out of the chair to adjust it correctly. Some people find this inconvenient. However, the fact that it can be moved vertically and it also has two thickness options makes it appealing. 

Functionality

These two support systems are designed for very different styles of sitting. Active sitters, or those who like to move around and change positions frequently, will prefer the Lumbar Support. It allows for much more freedom of movement.

Conversely, the PostureFit is ideal for those who prefer to stay in one position. Its firm support tends to be more restrictive when it comes to different ways of sitting. 

Affordability

There is a sizable cost difference between the two support systems. The original PostureFit Support Kit can be found on Amazon for just over $100 or on the Herman Miller website for $125. 

The PostureFit SL is sold by SmartFurniture (an authorized Herman Miller retailer) for $290. It comes with a new backrest that must be professionally installed. 

The Lumbar Support Pad from Herman Miller is on Amazon for $60. Herman Miller sells it on their website for $35. As far as affordability goes, the Lumbar Support system is the clear winner.

Safety

When it comes to Herman Miller products, there isn’t much cause for concern because of their exceptional quality and 12-year warranty. Both of these products are safe. 

In terms of ergonomic benefits, many people prefer the PostureFit for its extensive support that engages the spinal muscles evenly and helps prevent health issues. 

However, these benefits can only be enjoyed with the proper fit. Since the PostureFit is fixed and doesn’t move up and down, it isn’t beneficial for those who find it uncomfortable.

For people who need a height-adjustable system, the Lumbar Support will provide more ergonomic value. Its two thickness options help make up for the lack of adjustable depth. 

Ultimately, since both products have already been deemed as safe, their health benefits come down to personal needs and preferences. 

Check out this video for a visual comparison of each lumbar support option:

Final Thoughts

If you’re considering buying a Herman Miller Aeron chair, you want to make sure that it will be comfortable. Because it’s a sizable investment, it’s important to know what lumbar support system will best suit your needs.

Both the classic Aeron and the remastered Aeron have two lumbar options: the Lumbar Support and the PostureFit. 

The Lumbar Support is a user-friendly system that is height-adjustable and offers two thickness options. It is less expensive and easier to install. 

The PostureFit is very stylish and provides more support with a larger pad that covers both the lumbar and sacral area. It’s easier to adjust, but it’s fixed and cannot be moved vertically. It’s also more expensive and more complicated to install. In the case of the PostureFit SL and the remastered Aeron, you’ll need professional installation. 

Since both systems offer different features, trying them out is the best way to determine which will work best for you. 

If there is a nearby Herman Miller store, you can sit in each one and speak to staff who will answer questions. If online ordering is your only option, you can always take advantage of the return policy.