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Finding the Best Back Cushion for Your Needs

Corey Majeau

Do you spend a lot of hours sitting down at work only to discover that you end up with terrible lower back pain? Humans weren’t exactly meant to be confined to a chair the entire day, so that’s not your body’s natural posture. You can, however, force the spine to say in a correct position using a back cushion. Also known as a lumbar pillow, I’m going to help you identify the best back cushion for your needs.

1. Niceeday Store Lumbar Support Pillow – Editor's Choice

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  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

2. SAMSONITE Ergonomic Lumbar Support Pillow

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  • Price Range: $10 – $20
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 3

3. Qutool Store Lumbar Support Pillow

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  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

4. Qutool Store Seat Cushion & Lumbar Support Pillow

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  • Price Range: $40 – $50
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

5. Everlasting Comfort Lumbar Support Pillow

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  • Price Range: $30 – $40
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 5

6. Cushion Lab Extra Dense Lumbar Pillow

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  • Price Range: $60 – $70
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 2

7. RELAX SUPPORT RS1 Lumbar Support Pillow

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  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 5

8. Amazon Basics Gel Enhanced Back Support Cushion

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  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

Best Back Cushions

1. Niceeday Store Lumbar Support Pillow – Editor's Choice

Highlights

  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

Pros

  • Removable and washable cover.
  • Adjustable double strap system.
  • Side pocket included.

Cons

  • Very firm and not comfortable for everyone.

Constructed with a mesh cover for added breathability and a memory foam insert to adjust to the natural curvature of your body, this lumbar pillow sets the tone for our list of amazing back cushions. The role of the pillow is to correct your posture, but also to help alleviate back pain, help with tailbone pain, and prevent potential back pain injuries.

The cover can be removed thanks to its zippered design and cleaned in the washing machine. The pillow measures 18.9 x 15.4 x 5.1 inches and weighs 1.5 pounds.

2. SAMSONITE Ergonomic Lumbar Support Pillow – Runner Up

Highlights

  • Price Range: $10 – $20
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 3

Pros

  • Easy to install and move as needed.
  • Machine washable cover.
  • Adjustable strap for a secure fit.

Cons

  • Strap too short for large chairs.

The installation of this lumbar cushion only requires one easy step because it comes with an adjustable chair strap already built-in. The supporting memory foam in the pillow keeps your lower back in the correct position while maintaining a firm but comfortable feel.

This back cushion can be moved to wherever additional lumbar support is required. Installing it is a breeze because of the adjustable and user-friendly one-clip belt that comes included. It features a mesh cover added for more breathability, but the truth is that the memory foam still runs pretty hot.

3. Qutool Store Lumbar Support Pillow – Best for driving

Highlights

  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

Pros

  • Machine washable cover.
  • Adjustable straps.
  • 5 years warranty.

Cons

  • Too thick for some chairs.

This lumbar cushion is going to be of great assistance to you if you spend a significant amount of time sitting in chairs, whether they be for work, gaming, or driving. The Qutool lumbar support pillow adopts memory foam with a high density that is also thick, long-lasting, fantastic, and perfectly formed to ensure a solid, comfortable fit and to boost your comfort while maintaining its density.

Much like the other back cushions we’ve looked at, this one also features a mesh cover that promises breathability. While it does deliver it, the memory foam inside the pillow still retains a lot of heat. Thankfully, the cover can be removed and cleaned in the washing machine, so that’s a bonus.

4. Qutool Store Seat Cushion & Lumbar Support Pillow – Best combo set

Highlights

  • Price Range: $40 – $50
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

Pros

  • Seat and back pillows included.
  • Comfortable memory foam fill.
  • Machine washable covers.

Cons

  • Both pillows are very firm.

If you want back and seating support for your chair, how about purchasing a set that includes a back and a seat cushion? The one has a non-slip rubber bottom, is filled with supportive memory foam, and comes with a removable and machine washable cover.

The lumbar pillow that comes with the set features a mesh cover that promises added breathability. You get an adjustable strap that can secure this to the chair and prevent it from sliding side to side or falling altogether.

5. Everlasting Comfort Lumbar Support Pillow – Best Memory Foam

Highlights

  • Price Range: $30 – $40
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 5

Pros

  • Machine washable cover.
  • 2 adjustable straps.
  • Made using certified materials.

Cons

  • A bit bulky.

Memory foam makes up the entirety of its composition; no other materials, such as fillers or additives, are used. This delivers the ideal balance of a gentle feel and a robust firmness for support. The lumbar pillow utilizes the heat generated by your own body to contour to your spine, thereby delivering individualized support and comfort.

It is designed with two adjustable straps that fit a variety of chair sizes and works even with tall office and gaming chairs. The cover is made from mesh materials. The cushion is advertised as being washing machine-friendly but it’s only the cover that you can remove and wash.

6. Cushion Lab Extra Dense Lumbar Pillow – Best for back pain

Highlights

  • Price Range: $60 – $70
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 2

Pros

  • Machine washable cover.
  • Designed by a physical therapist.
  • Adjustable strap included.

Cons

  • Too thick for small office chairs.

Sadly, while sitting is bad, we can’t always avoid it, especially when it’s part of our job. Since sitting down for too long likely leads to back pain in most people, you need a lumbar pillow to help take away some of that pain. This one right here was designed by a physical therapist and has a contour meant to provide lower back support.

Using hyperfoam as a fill, this pillow is designed to dynamically rebound and support the back throughout the entire day. The adjustable strap secures this to the chair.

7. RELAX SUPPORT RS1 Lumbar Support Pillow – Best for office workers

Highlights

  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 5

Pros

  • Adjustable strap.
  • Machine washable cover.
  • Lightweight and portable.

Cons

  • Some complaints about it being thick and firm.

When you have to spend your day confined to a tiny office chair with zero lumbar support, that’s pretty much where you start hating your job. With this lumbar pillow, some of that aching body feeling can go away. Made using memory foam, the pillow measures 16.5 x 3.94 x 8.27 inches and is surrounded by a polyester fabric cover.

The cover is removable and washable, which is always good news because nobody likes scrubbing. The pillow also has an adjustable strap so you can secure a range of different chairs. However, this one works best with small ergonomic office chairs.

8. Amazon Basics Gel Enhanced Back Support Cushion – Best cooling pillow

Highlights

  • Price Range: $20 – $30
  • Materials: memory foam
  • Color Options: 1

Pros

  • Color Options: 1
  • Washable mesh cover.
  • Adjustable strap.

Cons

  • Cushion slides down some chairs even when strapped.

The problem with all the memory foam back cushions is that they run hot. That’s how memory foam works, by taking heat away from the body and using it to mold the material to fit your natural curvature. In turn, that could cause your lower back to sweat quite a lot. This Amazon Basics pillow is looking to solve that problem by adding a layer of gel to the product.

This gel layer is placed on top of the memory foam fill and the pillows threw some breathable mesh into play to make sure the pillow is as cooling as possible.

What Is Lumbar Support?

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) did a study and more than one in four working persons have reported suffering from low back discomfort.

The NIOSH, which is a division of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), keeps a comprehensive online database of tools for preventing low back pain in the workplace. Utilizing the findings of ergonomics research is recommended as one of the most all-encompassing practices by the business.

To put it more simply, ergonomics is the application of our understanding of the human body to the modification and personalization of any sort of working conditions, to avoid musculoskeletal illnesses and minimize or avoid chronic pain.

The lumbar area, often known as the lower back, is the section of your spine that is located lower down. Hunching is a common side effect of sitting for long periods, and this flattens the natural curve of the lumbar spine. This might cause discomfort and strain on the body.

Lumbar support can be achieved by positioning cushions either behind the lower back, behind the knees, or in both of these regions simultaneously. It will assist your spine to keep its natural curve and will lessen the pressure that is placed on your low back.

Reasons to Use a Back Cushion

A back cushion is exactly what it sounds like: a cushion for your back. Since it’s meant to offer support for your lumbar area, it’s most commonly known as a lumbar pillow

The Dangers of Sitting Down

An unhealthy amount of sitting can be detrimental to one’s health. And the majority of us are guilty of sitting for excessive amounts of time, whether we are piling up hours in traffic commuting, bent over a makeshift work-from-home setup, or lounging on the couch all day after completing a long run. 

All of that sitting around can increase your chance of chronic back pain, in addition to other problems like type 2 diabetes and heart issues, particularly if you have bad posture while sitting and your lower back is not properly supported by anything.

This is when a supportive lumbar pillow can come in handy. What lumbar pillows do is make sitting down for many hours less unhealthy by supporting your spine to maintain its natural curvature. You can also invest in a standing desk if you work in an office or work from home.

What Does Science Say?

Several scientific studies have shown that these pillows are effective. For example, a study published in Chiropractic and Manual Therapies in 2013 discovered that pillows that have a cut-out for posterior pelvic tissues are more comfortable for people that experience lower back pain. 

You might want to check this out: Best Seat Cushion

Pros and Cons of Back Cushions

The benefits of using a lumbar cushion outweigh the disadvantages, so let’s take a look at the pros and cons of back cushions. 

• Keep the Spine Aligned

The most important body part, besides vital organs, is the spinal column. In addition to providing support for the rest of your body and freedom of movement, it safeguards your spinal cord. Because of this, a lot of things can go sideways if your spine is not functioning as well as it should.

To begin, the lumbar cushion distributes the weight of your body so that it doesn’t put as much pressure on your spine. The cushion conforms to the curvature of your lower back, which helps to elongate the spine and loosen any knots that may be causing pressure.

• Forces a Better Posture

Keeping a healthy posture is one of the most important things you can do for your body. For instance, you have most likely seen health experts encouraging people to keep a proper posture regardless of the position they’re sitting in. 

When you have good posture, your muscles feel less tension, and your bones are aligned throughout the body. However, when you have to work behind a desk for 8 hours every day, it’s not that easy to maintain good posture. Back cushioning helps with that. 

• Improves Circulation

It is possible to disrupt the normal flow of blood throughout your body if you sit for long periods or lie down all night. When the muscles are allowed to remain inactive for an extended amount of time, they will begin to contract, which will hurt blood circulation. Lumbar pillows, in addition to exercises, can alleviate the stiffness in the back.

When you sit or lie down, equally distributing the weight of your body can be accomplished by placing a pillow on your lower back. This helps increase circulation, which in turn lessens fatigue and cramping in the muscles.

• Makes You More Productive

It is difficult to focus when you are fatigued or experiencing discomfort. Your ability to perform well at work or go about with your usual daily activities will suffer as a direct result of the tension that the pain causes.

Back pain and other physical problems can be alleviated with the assistance of a lumbar cushion, which offers support. Because of this, you won’t need to worry about your back getting strained even if you have to work for several hours or run errands the whole day.

You might be interested: Best Lumbar Supports

Common Back Cushion Materials 

The kind of fill that you should search for in a lumbar cushion might change depending on your specific requirements as well as the things that you like.

• Memory Foam

This particular variety of pillow molds itself to the contours of your body to relieve tension and maintain spinal alignment. Memory foam may be advantageous for people who suffer from back pain. 

There are two major downsides to using memory foam. The first one is that the material is more prone to sagging compared to others and the second is that memory foam usually retains a lot of body heat. 

• PU Foam

This substance, which also goes by the name polyfoam, has a moderate amount of contouring ability and is less expensive than memory foam. On the other hand, it does not tend to be as long-lasting and is also not as dense.

• Latex

This substance originates from the sap that is extracted from rubber trees. It has a moderate amount of contouring, which provides additional support for your back, and it is incredibly durable and naturally breathable. On the other side, latex pillows tend to be more expensive than other types of pillows and are usually more difficult to find compared to foam pillows. 

• Buckwheat

Buckwheat hulls are used as the filling in these pillows, which are also designed to encourage airflow and prevent you from overheating. 

Back pain can be alleviated thanks to the adjustability of the height and firmness level as well as the even distribution of the hulls. However, the increased price tag and the rustling sound that these pillows generate may be off-putting to some customers.

You May Forget to Stand Up

When you sit down for too long and start feeling uncomfortable, you feel the urge to stand up for a few minutes. That’s a really good thing and every expert recommends standing for at least 10 minutes per hour.

If a lumbar pillow makes sitting too comfortable, you might forget to stand up and stretch your muscles a little. 

Features to Look for in a Back Cushion

Before buying a back cushion, you need to consider a few things to make sure you’re buying what’s best for you. 

Price

The cost of pillows can fluctuate quite a little and may be determined by several factors, one of which is the kind of material that is utilized. If you want to discover a pillow that satisfies your requirements, you should first determine your financial limitations and then search for an option that falls within an acceptable price range for you.

Loft

Several pillows on the market come in a variety of heights or with replaceable inserts, letting you customize the product to meet your specific requirements.

Size and Shape

There are a variety of lumbar pillows on the market, and many of them are created with the express purpose of supporting your spinal alignment, enhancing your posture, or releasing stress in your lower back to ease the pain. 

You must locate a pillow that corresponds in size and shape to your body to keep it in place when you are making use of it.

Firmness

It is critical to choose a lumbar cushion that satisfies your tastes in terms of the level of hardness while also providing a satisfactory compromise between comfort and support.

Materials

Since there’s so many materials that may be used to make pillows, it is important to establish your own choice before going shopping. You should also search for a pillow that has a cover that can be removed and washed without much difficulty.

In the End

The best back cushion is the one that helps you sit down comfortably for as long as you need to. Remember that using a good lumbar pillow doesn’t mean you should sit down for hours on end. Make it a mission to stand up for at least 5 minutes for every 40-50 minutes spent sitting down. 

Photo credit: Bangkok Click Studio/Shutterstock;
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Frequently Asked Questions

Is a lumbar cushion good for your back?

Using a lumbar cushion for your back is better than not using one. Just make sure you don’t rely on it to forever correct your posture and remember to stand up and stretch your legs even if you have to sit down at work all day.

Do back support cushions help?

Anything that can support your lower back and have your spine sitting in its natural position is helpful. Back support cushions are just designed specifically for this purpose.

What is a lumbar cushion used for?

As time passes, the muscles that provide support for your spine can experience fatigue, which potentially leads to bad posture. The curve of your spine is supported by lumbar cushions, which can help ease lower back discomfort by reducing the tension on the muscles in that area.