Join the Movement

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Think about the last time you had a crank a handle to move the seat in a car. Now think about the last time you did that on a living room sofa or chair. Chances are, the living room situation happened more recently.

It might not sound groundbreaking, but the “power recline” feature has been much slower to gain popularity in living room furniture than in motor vehicles.  Now, lounge chair manufacturers are installing the feature on their most popular models to add an extra incentive to buy – and it’s paying off.

Just as in a vehicle, this mechanism shifts the chair into different positions with the touch of a button.

“Power recline is one of the fastest growing options purchased by consumers,” says Penny W. Eudy, product manager at La-Z-Boy Incorporated.

She points out that some shoppers aren’t able to enjoy a reclining chair without the power feature. “Even for those who aren’t physically able to manually recline a chair, the PowerRecline enables them to be more independent as it makes the entire motion effortless,” Eudy says.

Another popular lounge chair started in the outdoor furniture category and moved indoors. A “gravity”-style recline moves almost effortlessly when the user leans back in the chair.

Companies like Variér Furniture are designing adjustable chairs for indoors that shift with the motion of the body.

“After resting a while, we want to be active again, and after being active, we want to rest again. Why can’t we alternate between these body postures in a single chair?” says Jesper Petersen, CEO of Variér, a Norwegian company with products available in the United States through contract dealers and retail stores. Variér’s Gravity Balans Chair has four tilting angles. When it’s fully reclined, the chair elevates legs above the heart and rocks gently to the rhythm of breathing, creating a sense of weightlessness, Petersen says.

For those who are looking for a new addition to the living room and hoping for something more exciting than Dad’s Old Recliner, power and gravity-style recline should get them up and moving.

Tags: lounge chair, furniture, relaxation