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Gamers spend a lot of time and energy channeling their focus on the best hardware and software to run their programs most efficiently, but they often overlook the gaming experience offscreen. You can have the most impressive processor there is, but if you can't focus on the game because you're suffering from an esports injury due to improper seating arrangements, that processor isn't going to do much for your score. A great gaming chair might be all that lies between a gamer and victory. Or, at the very least, a gamer and a healthy back.
If you're going to commit to spending a few hours parked in front of your computer or TV screen, investing in a chair that will support you and keep you in an alert but comfortable position will make all the difference. A quality gaming chair is an investment in your health: Sitting with poor posture or hunching over a controller or keyboard for more than 10 minutes can cause tightness and pain in the back, shoulders, hips, and knees. Plus, there are so many different gaming chairs on the market with dynamic features that can change the way you play entirely — think nap-friendly reclines, built-in massagers, and surround sound.
The best gaming chairs to buy right now:
TL;DR? If you need to lie down after sitting and gaming for a few hours, your setup needs some attention. These are some of the best gaming chairs on the market — they offer comfortable support for mobile, desktop, and video gamers alike.
Most rated: Homall High Back Ergonomic Leather Adjustable Swivel Gaming Chair with Headrest and Lumbar Support
With nearly 18,000 ratings on Amazon that are overwhelmingly positive, this Homall gaming chair is easily one of the most popular chairs. Though the chair is not as adjustable as others on the market, customers of different heights and sizes say they're happy with how comfortable it is, how easy it is to assemble, and how high quality it feels for a mid-level price. With a steel frame and a soft headrest and lumbar cushion, the chair is ergonomically built to support good posture. "The base cushion is firm but soft and forgiving, the back and head pillows have excellent support, and the seatback feels strong enough to hold up for years," one reviewer explains.
Buy it! Homall High Back Ergonomic Leather Adjustable Swivel Gaming Chair with Headrest and Lumbar Support, $139.99 (orig. $169.99) at amazon.com
Best with built-in speakers: GTracing Gaming Chair with Bluetooth Speakers
A chair that has built-in Bluetooth speakers really takes the idea of surround sound to the next level, so if you like to immerse yourself in your game, this GTracing gaming chair will help. It connects to any device with Bluetooth capabilities, like your gaming device, your cinema speakers, and even your music player. "Bluetooth speaker quality is better than expected. The voice is loud enough to hear game sound as well as group meetings," one customer said in an Amazon review. You'll get up to six hours of speaker play in between charges.
Buy it! GTracing Gaming Chair with Bluetooth Speakers, $169.99 (orig. $199.99) at amazon.com
Credit: Home Depot
Best with footrest: Blythewood Red High Back Faux Leather Racing Style Gaming Chair with Footrest
If you're used to gaming in bed, this gaming chair with a dramatic recline function and built-in footrest will give you the same amount of lounge-ability, but offer an option for a supported seat, too. The tilt lock and recline adjustment features, combined with a luxe padded frame, make this chair comfortable enough to actually sleep in — but when you're ready to get to work, the chair's lumbar cushion and sturdy frame will keep you upright and focused.
Buy it! Blythewood Red High Back Faux Leather Racing Style Gaming Chair with Footrest, $203.64 at homedepot.com
Best ergonomic: Respawn Omega-Xi Fortnite Gaming Reclining Ergonomic Chair with Footrest
This race car-style gaming chair is carefully designed to look and feel luxurious. Featuring segmented padding, a built-in headrest and footrest, and padded armrests, the chair is comfort-forward. What's more, it has a more sophisticated look than other gaming chairs on the market, so if you're looking for something that looks nice in your living room or could double as a professional office chair, this works.
Buy it! Respawn Omega-Xi Fortnite Gaming Reclining Ergonomic Chair with Footrest, $228.16 (orig. $249.99) at amazon.com
Credit: Bed, Bath and Beyond
Best rocker: X-Rocker Graphite 2.0 Bluetooth Gaming Rocker
If you're more comfortable on the ground and want to be able to rock and roll while you play, literally, this X-Rocker with Bluetooth is a solid choice. It provides a relaxed gaming or viewing experience that traditional upright chairs do not. Plus, it's Bluetooth enabled, has two built-in speakers, and a headphone and charging port. If you want a gaming chair that you can stow in a closet in between uses, this is a good option at only 8 pounds.
Buy it! X-Rocker Graphite 2.0 Bluetooth Gaming Rocker, $119.99 at bedbathandbeyond.com
Best splurge: Duramont Ergonomic Adjustable Office Chair
If you spend a lot of time in front of the screen, investing in a chair that properly supports your back is crucial. This chair from Duramont is adjustable, so you can move the headrest height and angle to get the best support for your body. Everything from the tilt tension to the forgiving mesh fabric to the armrest height is designed for proper alignment and comfort. Plus, it doubles as an office chair, so you can use it to game and to work from home.
Buy it! Duramont Ergonomic Adjustable Office Chair, $329.99 at amazon.com
Best on a budget: AuAg Office and Gaming Chair
Gaming chairs can get expensive. If you want to improve your setup but don't want to invest in a serious or gaming-specific chair, this modern office chair is an affordable option. It comes with a removable headrest and lumbar cushion, has full tilt and swivel capabilities, and can be adjusted to suit your height. Plus, the chair reclines up to 135 degrees, so you can opt for a more relaxed posture if needed.
Buy it! AuAg Office aAnd Gaming Chair, $84.99 at amazon.com
Best bean bag: AmazonBasics Memory Foam Filled Bean Bag Chair with Microfiber Cover
This is not the bean bag chair you had growing up. This is the adult version, and it's designed to be a totally acceptable seating option in an adult home. If you want a comfortable chair to game in but don't want a traditional gaming chair (or you live with someone who prefers you don't have a racing chair in the living room), this giant memory foam bean bag chair might bridge the gap between your needs. It's large enough to provide some back support and dynamic enough to accommodate both gamers and loungers alike.
Buy it! AmazonBasics Memory Foam Filled Bean Bag Chair with Microfiber Cover, $162.28 at amazon.com
Best massager: BestOffice PC Gaming Chair
If you suffer from back pain, this gaming chair with a built-in massager lumbar cushion is a must. The gentle one-speed vibration massage is controlled with a remote and will not only ease soreness, but also help keep you alert and relaxed. The chair reclines up to 155 degrees and will lock safely into place so you can confidently lounge.
Buy it! BestOffice PC Gaming Chair, $114.99 at amazon.com