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Chairs: The All Encompassing and Definitive Ranking

The indisputable, all-encompassing, in-depth look at the best ways to take a load off when you’re feeling tired.

It’s CHAIR WEEK here at Corn Nation as we get ready to fight for the greatest rivalry trophy (if you have a trophy for it, then it’s a RIVALRY god damnit!) in all of college sports: the $5 bits of broken chair trophy! Damn you Delany, on the way out, make sure we make it the officially official trophy the athletic departments are forced to recognize as the award for rowing the farthest[TM] when the Gophers and Huskers play. Anyways, with the trophy game looming between the Minnesota Golden Gophers and the Nebraska Cornhuskers this Saturday night, we bring you my in-depth look at the different kinds of chairs in the world and rank them based on the worst to best kind of ergonomical, butt down, back still vertical resting devices out there.

14. The Bubble Chair

These things seem super uncomfortable and look really dumb. The only positive thing I have to say about them is this is basically what Agent J had in Men In Black that he took the written exam in, and that scene was hilarious. Otherwise these should just stop existing. Same goes for Barcelona Chairs which we will lump in together with Bubble Chairs.

13. The Folding Chair

At the base line is the simplest, most cost effective form of mass sitting in production. Sure, there can be some more comfortable versions of this if, say, you’re a member of the NBA, but in reality most of the world has simple cheap, uncomfortable metal or plastic folding chairs for the masses to squirm uncomfortably on while they check their watches or phones for when they can stop listening to the corporate synergy discussion and go back to their cubicle.

12. The High-Chair

High-chairs come in all kinds, from the comfortably padded with a food tray, to the most basic wooden block in a fast food restaurant. These are absolutely necessary, but they’re only needed for a few years and then are utterly useless to humans. This is why they’re ranked so low in the list, but do not feel sad for them as they are not forgotten in importance! (Also in this category are car seats and booster seats)

11. The Desk Chair

Sure, your office could splurge and buy you something that is actually comfortable. They could get one that has lots of little knobs and levers for all sorts of ergonomic features that leave your back feeling supported and not spasming by 5 pm. But let’s be real here, they don’t and stuck you with an uncomfortable, back ache inducing, broken wheel on the base piece of “furniture” and that’s why millennials like myself prefer a standing desk.

10. Love Seats

No, this is not in the couch category. It is totally in the chair category, just barely. I told you, this is a definitive list you can’t argue with. So, who actually sits in a “Love Seat” with their significant other on a regular basis? Nobody! When you’re at a party, and you end up in a love seat, it’s with some random person you don’t know and you’re just there awkwardly avoiding touching each other because all the other seats were taken. Hence these chairs get dinged big time in the rankings because they are badly named and awkwardly uncomfortable in social settings.

Our dog has taken over our love seat of late.

9. Waiting Room Chairs

They aren’t comfortable, they usually look like some weird retro 70’s or ugly post-modern design, and you don’t want to be here in the first place. So waiting room chairs are by default going to get docked points toward their standings in this list. However, they are not awkward like love seats or as typically uncomfortable as most desk chairs, so they get the nod up. Also in this category is airport, train station, bus station, etc. waiting chairs.

Bonus category: Whatever the hell this waiting room type thing is:

8. Lounge Chairs

There are a truly large variety of styles when it comes to lounge chairs. Yet, just about every style out there is weird, ugly, uncomfortable, or all of the above. These are generally chairs that you have for making your living room or parlor (do people really have those anymore?) look fancy and snobbish. You use them at most, once a year when your mother-in-law comes to visit and is overstaying her welcome after dinner so you have your after meal coffee in these chairs to encourage her to pack it up already.

7. Queen Anne/Winged Chairs

Similar to lounge chairs, this category is not really at all comfortable. However, they at least look impressive and fancy in their old school feel instead of tacky and weird.

6. Adirondack Chairs

A true icon among chair. Adirondack chairs are the perfect place to enjoy a cold beverage on a hot summer day, take in a sunset on your dock overlooking the water, or sip your morning coffee on a crisp fall day as you eagerly await the upcoming game. Even though they are a simple wooden chair, these are incredibly comfortable to lounge in even without padding. And they look simply fantastic when you instagram then to brag to all of your friends about your vacation. Bonus: new versions are set up to pour a glass of wine for you at the flip of a lever!

5. Dining Chairs

Some can be comfortable, some can be a block of wood, you truly don’t know what you’re going to get in this category most of the time. However, a nice dining room set really does look just fantastic in a home.

4. Rocking Chair

The all time grandma classic. The chair your parents rocked you to sleep in when you were a colicky little shit as an infant and wouldn’t let them sleep. The chair grandpa sits in on the porch with his shotgun waiting for the squirrels to make a dash for grandma’s bird feeders again. These chairs are an American classic that everyone needs one of to relax and sit back while they contemplate all the big questions in their life any given moment.

USA, Michigan, Lake Huron, Mackinac Island, Grand Hotel,...
Rocking chairs line the world’s largest porch at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island
Photo by Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images

3. Bar Stools/Chairs

While some can be a basic round circle of wood with no back, usually there is some form of a foot rail and a back to the chair to lean into. Some can be padded, some adjust in height, and most even swivel to keep you entertained! In the end, the reason these chairs are so high on the list is simple: they keep you upright at the bar as you drown your sorrows over what Ohio State just did to you on the field. And for that, you can’t really put a value on them high enough to match their utility.

2. Sports Arena Chair Backs

Better than bench seating after you move into the latter half of your 20’s, this is the best way to take in a sporting event outside of your own home in the first place chair category below. Cupholder? Check. Clear divide between you and the super fat guy next to you so he can’t encroach on your unmarked bench seating area? Check. Backrest to lean into when you need to dejectedly lay your head into your hands and sob after that last second hail-mary Aaron Rodgers was unfairly given because of a non-facemask facemask penalty? Check. Also in this category are movie theater chairs and recliners. Ignore the term “seat back” because that would mean I have to go into a rant about airline seats, and a seat is not a chair. Plus, we all get it, slim line airline seats suck and we all hate them. So un-original, and we strive to bring you original content.

Rocker style seat backs with cup holders even! Oh the luxury!
Photo By Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images

1. La-Z-Boy/Recliners

The chair everyone wants in the living room. The most comfortable seating device known to man. The perfect spot for falling asleep and snoring while the rest of the family/friends are trying to finish movie night. There is nothing more comfortable or status affirming than being the person who gets to enjoy the recliner every night.

But of course, the real winner here in our rankings is:


Please join us in supporting Team Jack and UMN Children’s Hospital as we get ready for the greatest rivalry trophy in the world this Saturday at TCF Bank Stadium in Minneapolis!


Right now (Tues October 8th - 3:35 PM Central) Nebraska fans have hit only $1,060 of a $10,000 goal. Minnesota fans are at $2,210! We need all the juju we can get!