Recliners for the Big and Tall Buying Guide
I have great feedback on the small blog post I put together for buying recliners for big and tall people so I thought I would expand on the subject. It’s great being big, tall or burly; the cupboards in your home will never drive you crazy; you can wrestle off jar lids without help; and no one will run you off the sidewalk. But it can have its downside, especially when shopping for furniture where everything, from bedroom sets to living room furnishings, is geared toward average or standard size.
Nothing says “kick back” like a new recliner, but if you’re big or tall or both, you might have trouble finding one that’s the ideal fit. Don’t despair! There really are recliners out there that are made just for you.
Keep in Mind
When choosing the perfect recliner, make sure that when sitting upright, your lower spine is fully supported by the backrest and that it cradles your shoulders and neck. If you do find a recliner that you just must have, but it isn’t an ideal fit, you can select one with a matching ottoman or an adjustable, built-in footrest. This will take the pressure off the backs of your legs, one of the first places to experience discomfort when not sitting properly.
Check the product information provided by the manufacturer or distributor for weight capacity to ensure the comfort level and longevity of your new recliner. While wide-body recliners are designed specifically for the big and tall, the weight capacity for individual models and brands varies from recliner to recliner.
Make room. A recliner typically needs to be at least six inches away from the wall to fully recline. Even zero clearance recliners need a bit a space to maneuver.
Ensure that any mechanisms and levers are easy to operate and to reach. If you have to twist or lean it will cancel out the relaxing benefits of your recliner.
Oversized recliners are good value for the money. Many manufacturers offer recliners for the big and tall that are comparable to standard sized recliners, but are constructed with heavy duty materials, extra-strength fabrics and reinforced frames and seams.
Perspective and Scale
It’s nothing new: manufacturers have been designing and producing chairs and recliners for big people for several decades now. They have just been harder to find. Whereas in past years, marketing strategies have been low-key and aimed at specialty markets, today, the recliner landscape has changed dramatically.
Directly attributed to the growing trend of America’s expanding waistlines, recliner and other types of furniture manufacturers are responding to customer demand by updating marketing strategies and making more comfortable chairs and recliners intended for bigger sized people.
Recliners for big people typically have the following characteristics:
- Seat cushion dimensions are at least four inches wider, from the standard 16” to 20”
- Scale of the chair is generally bigger, including a wider back and a deeper seating area
- Legs and bases are designed to provide additional support
- Seat cushions and seat backs are plusher
- Frame is reinforced
- Industry and voluntary manufacturer standard weight capacities (the amount of weight a piece of furniture is designed to support) have been increased
Types of Recliners
A recliner is essentially an armchair with some extra bells and whistles designed with your comfort in mind. Typical features of a wide body recliner include a more spacious seating area, plushier padding, an ergonomic back and a footrest, either built-in or ottoman style.
With the stress that our bodies face during a typical day, a recliner built with ergonomics in mind offers the best support and can actually contribute to improving an individual’s overall sense of health and well-being.
For people with joint, sore muscle or mobility issues, the Catnapper Invincible Power Lift Full Lay-Out Oversized Chaise Recliner does much of the work of standing for you. A power lift recliner raises the seating area to a semi-standing position, making exiting the chair so much easier.
A glider recliner reclines, glides back and forth and rocks in a closed position. Like the Catnapper Goliath Oversized Swivel Glider Chaise Recliner, many manufacturers offer glider recliners with additional or optional features like 360-degree swivel, multiple recline positions or a built-in ergonomic headrest. A glider recliner is a really comfy trade-in for a regular armchair.
A push back recliner in disguise, the Distinction Leather Waldon Leather High Leg Recliner has the appearance of a traditional style armchair. Since they typically don’t have as much “hardware” associated with other types of recliners, they are easier to move from place to place. When decorating smaller sized rooms, a push back recliner is the ideal space saving solution.
Sure, they rock and recline, but they can also have other features such as pillow-top arms and an ergonomically styled backrest and headrest for added comfort. The Catnapper Score Leather Oversized Rocker Recliner will transform a corner of your den or living room into the perfect oasis to relax.
Would you like to change your point of view without getting up from your chair? Then the Franklin Fixed Back Manhattan Recliner Leather Chair would provide the best solution for you.
Recline in Comfort
Leather recliners are fashionable and comfortable. Select one like the Tandem Vincenzo Leather Chair with high quality leather, for ultimate support and durability.
A leather recliner makes a distinctive fashion statement and reflects your confident sense of style. Leather recliners are the ultimate in luxurious relaxation, the perfect antidote to a stressful, busy day.
You really enjoy the look of leather, but when thinking about buying a recliner for your family room, you wonder what the kids and pets will do to your lovely new leather recliner. But with a quality fabric recliner, you won’t have to compromise on comfort, good looks or style. Fabric recliners are available in all the usual suspects: glider recliners, rocker recliners, recliners with power lift, push recliners and swivel recliners.
Get really comfortable in home theater recliner like the Berkline 45090 Series Straight 4 Seat Home Theater Seating Recliner set. In addition to being an ideal way to sit back, theater recliners have special features designed to enhance your viewing pleasure. They typically include cup holders and hidden storage.
A chaise style recliner such as the Catnapper Teddy Bear Oversized Chaise Swivel Glider Recliner provides full body support from head to toe when the chair is fully reclined.
Don’t have much room to work with and definitely couldn’t fit both a sofa and a recliner in one room?
A reclining sofa or loveseat is the ideal solution, combining the advantages of both into one functional piece of furniture. A reclining sofa will give you the best of both worlds, since it is a sofa with reclining capabilities. If you are decorating a smaller-sized space, a fabric reclining loveseat fills the same function as a reclining sofa, without taking up as much space.
But be warned! Be prepared to share. If an oversized leather or fabric recliner offers you the ultimate in comfort and relaxation, it’s going to be appealing to any member of your family (including the family pet).
Nicolette Interior Design Diva