Seat Inclines/Angles. Where can i find comfortable examples?

i am currently designing some outdoor furniture for public use and i am looking for examples of comfortable seat inclines/angles.
can anyone please point me in the right direction?

I’d walk round your local public spaces and measure them!

While doing you may also be able to get some feedback from any users there. How comfortable is it? Is it too high? The back to vertical? etc etc.

dreyfuss - “measure of man” and the updated “measure of man and woman” is a good resource for basic ergonimcs standards…

@ sam.
ive already done this, im looking to compare my findings with some official measurements.
@ madhero.
cheers, im off to the uni library to get it now!

what sort of seating?

lounge, task, dining, sofa? they all use similar but different angles and heights.

i am currently designing some outdoor furniture for public use

the type of seating would be outdoor for public use… i’m guessing bench type… possibly… wild guess…

yah. seating isn’t a plug’n’play solution for angles. there are ranges and height that differ with the use and function. the outdoor seating i’ve designed (cast aluminum and some wrought iron) played all different uses and purposes.

kfj: just giving you a hard time. i agree that ergonomics change for different purposes and so forth… which is the real challenge with public seating. how do you make it comfortable for everyone? or do you want it to be comfortable??! a bench made out of razor blades! would you see ppl sitting on the ground next to it?

sorry going off on a tagent… i’m at work and i’m bored. :wink:

im designing some heated outdoor public furniture with seating and a perching ledge around the outer circumference. main materials are HDPE and PC.
my research around the UK has shown me that the average seat height is 440mm, average backrest height is 430mm and the average seat depth is 435mm, so i will be working around those real world examples. as i am designing the furniture for public use it should be comfortable for the average person (i know that comfort is in the butt of the beholder, and what is comfortable for one group of people may not be comfortable for another) and from my research it seems that a firm neutral seat with flat planes that allow users to assume their own position and posture, is the way to go. i am still working on the seat incline angles etc so thats why i posted here.

what kind of angles did you use in your outdoor seating?

you measurements are pretty good. these are general ergo numbers i use:

seat pan depth:

seat pan width:


backrest height and width (top of backrest):

= 45 cm

backrest lumbar support:
15-25 cm

backrest width


armrest height:
17-27cm (fixed)

armrest span:

seat pan angle recline and/or decline:
<= 6* total

seat pan-backrest angle:


seat pan-backrest recline:
recommended 0-30* (if >30*, use a head rest.)

to get your angles right, consider making a wooden buck, some timbers and plywood with hinges so you can test out various angles.

many thanks kfj.