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Tailgating Gear Review: Strongback Chairs

Posted by Dave On February - 21 - 2012

If someone asked you to knowingly and consciously cause yourself lower back pain, would you do it? What if someone told you all the attention to maintain good posture and proper back health was being undone in a matter of hours on the weekend? Would you change your habits in order to prevent lower back pain and keeping your spine healthy? You probably would. Unfortunately many of us continue to sit in tailgating chairs that are not comfortable and worse, are bad for your back.

The reason we are dropping all of this chiropractic speak on you is because we discovered a new tailgating chair that will not only change the way you sit at a tailgate party, but how you view other camping and tailgating chairs on the market. Here we review and test the Strongback Chair.

Strongback Chair Elite

We first discovered the Strongback Chair last month while out in Las Vegas for the Sports Licensing and Tailgate Show. At first glance it looked like a regular old tailgating chair. It didn’t even have any collegiate or professional team licensing on it. Surely the inventor wasn’t going to be that dumb to spend all that money to have a run of the mill folding chair at a trade show unless there was something that did not meet eye immediately. We were intrigued and had to ask what was different about the chair. We soon learned quite a bit was different.

The main difference between the Strongback Chair and a regular camping chair is that it improves your posture, supports your lower back and in our opinion is more comfortable. The main difference is that the curved frame-integrated lumbar support makes your sit properly with your back and spine holding in its natural, healthy position. Your spine has a natural curvature to it for a reason. When your spine is compressed and contorted in unhealthy and unnatural ways, discs get compressed and your back muscles need to compensate for bad posture. This all can lead to some sort of back pain and if you know of anyone who has had a bulging disc or any type of back pain, you already know how excruciating it can be.

Strongback posture diagram

We were sent a sample of the Strongback Chair Elite. It is the more expensive of the two models but because I am a bigger guy and this chair is rated to handle up to 300 pounds, it was the model of choice for us to test and review. When first taking it out of the box, we noticed it comes in a cylinder sleeve much like the other tailgating chairs you see in stores. The carrying bag has two straps instead of the one other tailgating chairs have so you can carrying it to your tailgating spot like a backpack. You don’t want to throw out your back before unpacking the chair so the double straps makes it a supportive way of being able to carrying it wherever you will be tailgating. Another cool feature just on the carrying bag was the top handle where the opening is located. I found this handle to be extremely useful in not only loading and unloading the chair in and out of the back of my SUV but also using it to keep the bag open when packing the chair away. Normally regular camping chairs bag openings will not stay open and it is a fight to get the opening around any part of the chair. The handle at the opening eliminated that hassle and made removal and replacement a breeze.

Once we got the chair out of the bag, we unfolded it and found it unfolded just like the other chairs. The big difference was when we sat in it. The first thing we noticed was that our back was straight, our shoulders were back and not hunched over and we were slightly leaning back. This position felt very natural and the additional support on our lower back was noticeable and very comfortable. In all honesty, you really do not notice the strain your lower back receives when sitting in a traditional camping chair until you sit in a Strongback Chair.

For comparison, we set up one of our older tailgating chairs next to the Strongback Chair and took the “Pepsi Challenge” with both of them. The difference in comfort and support was like night and day once we sat in the Strongback Chair and then sat in the standard tailgating chair. You wouldn’t think the difference was that noticeable but it really is.

To get a full run down on the major differences of the Strongback Chair compared to a regular camping chair, check out this video:

As you can see in the video the entire chair is designed for comfort and back support. Honestly a comfortable chair is all you want while out tailgating and if you are planning on doing any sitting for any length of time, I would highly recommend getting a Strongback Chair. Even if you don’t sit all that much while tailgating because you are either tending the grill or like to move around and visit, the amount of time you do spend sitting should be done with some back support.

Strongback Chairs come in two different models. The Strongback Elite is the top of the line chair that is designed to support up to 300 pounds and costs $79.95. The Strongback Zen supports 225 pounds and is priced at $45.95.

For more information or to buy one of your own, visit: strongbackchair.com

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TailgatingIdeas.com is a tailgating blog dedicated to bringing you the latest and most intriguing tailgating ideas out there. Whether it is the latest tailgating gear reviews, a great new recipe or a funny list to make you smile, our goal is to inform and entertain the avid and the casual tailgater alike.

Started in August 2007 by tailgating enthusiast Dave Lamm, TailgatingIdeas.com has evolved into an advocate for tailgaters rights and is not afraid to touch on controversial issues confronting those who frequent the tailgating parking lots.

To learn more about TailgatingIdeas.com and our team of writers, reviewers, cartoonists and contributors, please visit the About Us page.

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