Flexispot Soutien Ergonomic Office Chair hands-on
One of the most impactful pieces of furniture we use is our office or computer chair. Since many of us spend significant time every day in front of our computer, whether for work or leisure, we also spend part of our day sitting in some kind of chair. Thus, it is important to get a good chair that doesn't leave your back sore or your muscles aching. The Flexispot Soutien Ergonomic Office Chair might be that chair.
I've used the Soutien exclusively for the past three weeks. I work in a home office for a few hours every day, and I homeschool my kids at the same desk, so I'm in the office chair for a decent amount of time every day. Here are my thoughts.
Design, build, and assembly
There isn't too much to say about the aesthetics of the Soutien. It shares many characteristics of other office chairs: it's black with a mesh back and headrest and five spread caster wheels. The main seat is a thick black meshed pad mounted to a plastic and metal seat base. The back is attached to a metal frame that swoops around the edges of the mesh and attaches to the back rear of the seat. The armrests are curved and made from hard foam that has a little bit of give.
Perhaps the most notable features are the protruding headrest and lumbar support. Overall, the look of the chair is very subtle; it easily blends into any office without particularly drawing the eye.
The materials Flexispot uses for the Soutien are solid. I weigh ~225 lbs to give you some reference. The chair feels solid when I sit in it with no give or sway in the main support. The back also holds up when I throw my back into it, comfortably reclining with a good balance between supporting me and leaning back. The back smoothly reclines up to 45° from vertical and it holds firm at any angle. Flexispot did a great job with the recline; it's easy enough to lean back but firm enough to hold me up when I find a good spot.
The breathable mesh is also well built. It's a bit early to tell how well it will hold up over the years, but I'm optimistic. Additionally, the armrests and their pads feel strong. My children like to sit on the armrests of my chair during school (which has led to the early demise of a few other office chairs), but so far the Soutien has held up. The armrests are as sturdy as they were out of the box, and the pads show no signs of tearing or cracking.
All said, the Soutien feels very well built. I'm hopeful it'll last several years.
The Soutien arrived in a single box. Assembly was relatively straightforward. The backpiece is pre-assembled in one piece and screws into the seat piece, which snaps onto the main support. The armrests screw in with three screws each. The headrest and casters clip into their respective spots fairly easily. All said, it took me about 20 minutes to put the chair together from opening the box to sliding it under my desk.
In their marketing, Flexispot tends to throw around some buzzwords like "3D lumbar support" and "4D armrests," but these boil down to basic adjustments that most office chairs have. The "3D lumbar support" just means the lumbar piece has three different height levels it can slide into. The "4D armrests" can be adjusted in four directions: lateral rotation, forward/backward, laterally left/right, and vertically up/down.
Other adjustments include the seat depth, chair height (via a Samhongsa Class 4 Gas Lift), the height of the headrest, and the aforementioned recline. These adjustments are easy to make (often just sliding or pulling the section until it clicks), and the pieces hold firm in place once they're set.
There are some adjustments I sorely miss, though. First and foremost, the lumbar support is permanently attached. Flexispot's focus with the Soutien seems to be posture, and the lumbar piece helps in that. However, I know that lumbar supports are not everyone's cup of tea (myself included). Allowing the removal of the lumbar piece would greatly increase the flexibility of the Soutien, but I also understand it would make the lumbar support less firm and supportive.
Other options like the initial recline angle of the backrest (which is set firm at 90°) and the seat would also help the Soutien appeal to more people and feel more premium. As it stands, the basic adjustments (plus a few more) are present, and they are well-executed.
All in all, the Flexispot Soutien Ergonomic Office Chair is a solid choice for a comfortable office chair. It's very well built, feels great, and offers some good adjustments so that sitters can get it into a sweet spot.
I'd like to see more adjustment options (like the ones I listed above) in future revisions. I also want to point out the permanently attached lumbar support as that may be a dealbreaker for some.
At US$269.99 MSRP ($259.99 at the time of writing), the Soutien is a bit overpriced in this market segment. There are lots of other options that offer similar durability, aesthetics, features, and adjustments at about $200. Still, the Flexispot is a good option for those that value ergonomics and want to improve or maintain their posture. Just be sure you want a lumbar piece before you buy.
The Flexispot Soutien Ergonomic Office Chair can be purchased from Flexispot for $259.99 as of press time.
Disclaimer: The author of this review received the Flexispot Soutien Ergonomic Office Chair free of charge for the purpose of testing.