Steelcase has reinvented the iconic and ergonomic Please task chair with the Please Air, a lighter, more sustainable chair with a contemporary aesthetic, specifically designed for the hybrid-working era.

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After months working hunched over kitchen tables and stranded on sofas, many of us have learned the value of our office task chair. Defining the form, Steelcase’s Please chair is supportive and adjustable in all the right places

There were many reasons to miss office life during our enforced domestic confinements over the last two years, the company and camaraderie, the conversation and shared sense of purpose. Oh, and the chair.

Months of lockdown and hours working on the sofa or on dining chairs at the kitchen table left us not just dislocated and disorientated, but often with sore necks and aching backs.

The US giant has now released Please Air, a lighter and more minimal take on the original design, replacing plastic and upholstery with a revolutionary new supportive mesh

Classic reinvention with Steelcase | News

The US giant has now released Please Air, a lighter and more minimal take on the original design, replacing plastic and upholstery with a revolutionary new supportive mesh

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The science of back support

We longed for the ergonomic embrace of a well-designed and expertly engineered task chair. And they don't come much more embracing than Steelcase's Please. Now 15 years old, Please is the US giant's most popular chair in Europe. And with good reason.


Months of lockdown and hours working on the sofa or on dining chairs at the kitchen table left us not just dislocated and disorientated, but often with sore necks and aching backs


Steelcase's designs are always rooted in serious research, taking in everything from physiology to neuroscience. The company is committed to arriving at the fullest understanding of how we work and what that asks of our bodies, and so the smartest ways to offer support and encourage free movement.

In the development of Please, for example, Steelcase paid particular attention to spinal motion and posture. Almost 30 scientists from four universities interviewed 732 participants over four years for the research, developing a complex and comprehensive picture of how our backs cope with the stresses and strains of the working day.

Please Air is deliberately designed to perfectly complement both domestic and office interiors and is available in six colours with 13 different fabric options for its seat

Classic reinvention with Steelcase | News

Please Air is deliberately designed to perfectly complement both domestic and office interiors and is available in six colours with 13 different fabric options for its seat

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The spine print

The spine, Steelcase found, is a sophisticated support system with the upper and lower spine often acting independently, or rather doing different if complementary things. When the upper back arches backwards for instance, the lower back bows forward, and vice versa. The way our spine does that is unique to us. It's what Steelcase calls a 'spine print'. But unlike a fingerprint it is unfixed and changes during the day. In turn, different parts of the back need different levels of support at different times.

A particular strength of the Please chair is that it doesn't insist we adopt a specific position but understands that during any working day we wriggle, shift, squirm, scrunch and stretch. Please sympathetically mimics the movements in the user’s spine, providing support whatever their twists and turns.

The chair's patented LTC2 synchronised tilting mechanism features two separate backrests. The lumbar and thoracic sections are connected but function discretely - just like the upper and lower areas of the spine. The chair adapts itself to the morphology of every user providing a unique backrest support which allows for more freedom of movement. Both of these backrests have independent controls.

The design of the Please and Please Air chair is rooted in wide-ranging research into posture and spinal motion

Classic reinvention with Steelcase | News

The design of the Please and Please Air chair is rooted in wide-ranging research into posture and spinal motion

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The Please Air’s light touch

Please has now been given a design update with the launch of Please Air. The new design recognises that the future of work for many of us is now hybrid, with part-time working from home a permanent fixture.


A particular strength of the Please chair is that it doesn't insist we adopt a specific position but understands that during any working day we wriggle, shift, squirm, scrunch and stretch


The fresh take on the brand's iconic task chair replaces carefully shaped plastic and upholstery with self-supporting mesh. The result is a far lighter and minimal presence.

Employing a new manufacturing technique, the chair’s frame is swaddled in the unique polymer mesh and then placed in an oven, shrinkwrapping the mesh to exactly the right tension. This means the new chair offers the same levels of support and comfort as the original design.

Featuring two completely independent and adjustable back supports, Please Air can accommodate and support the unique ways our upper and lower backs arch and bow, what Steelcase calls our ‘spine print’

Classic reinvention with Steelcase | News

Featuring two completely independent and adjustable back supports, Please Air can accommodate and support the unique ways our upper and lower backs arch and bow, what Steelcase calls our ‘spine print’

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Please Air is available in six new colours with the option to choose different colours for each of the backrests. The seat, meanwhile, is available in a choice of 13 different fabrics, sustainable vinyl or leather. And the new chair is built from 32% recycled materials and is 99% recyclable (by weight) at the end of its long and happy life, meaning it has a lighter footprint in all the ways that matter.

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