Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support
Reviewing kit for the home office – Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support
As a tall man who spends most of my day in front of a computer my back takes a bit of hammering in the service of my business. The idea of a back rest with a hot or cool pad in appealed as a way of gently soothing my back whilst I work.
The back rest of the Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support is well made and covered in a smooth, charcoal grey fabric similar to car seat fabric. The cover is removable should it need cleaning. The support is given by a firm foam inner backed with a piece of board. This sounds quite flimsy, but in practice is pretty firm in conjunction with the well made cover.
It also allows the back rest to flex to accommodate the curves of your chair’s own back rest. The shape is good and for someone tall, such as myself, supports my lower back well.
The neat bit is a pouch set into the front face of the back rest that holds a gel pack that can be heated in the microwave or cooled in the fridge. The pouch is very well designed with a synthetic leather piece over the open end to help reduce wear when the gel pack is taken in and out.
The gel pack feels a bit under-filled compared to the one I have from a well-known chemist. I suspect that this is a compromise to stop the gel pooling a the bottom of the pack.
Unfortunately, this, combined with the thickness of the fabric means the heat (or cold) takes a long time to seep through and doesn’t last for long, which is disappointing. If the heat or cold lasted longer the Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support would score higher.
Easy to use? ****
The back rest has a single strap that goes round the back of the chair. The strap has a strong friction buckle and seems to be well stitched in to the rest of the back rest, so you can pull it good and tight.
If your office chair, like mine, has a back rest that tapers from top to bottom then the strap can be used to control the height of the rest on your chair. If the chair back is straight I suspect it would slide down to the seat and this may not be an ideal position.
The gel pack is a tight fit and slightly awkward to get in, but needs to be so it stays in place and can cover a decent area of your back. However, the opening is large enough to get my meaty hands in so it isn’t too difficult to fit and smooth out the gel pack.
The build quality of the Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support is very good and it looks a smart and professional product in an office. The quality fabric and stitching detail over the hot and cold pack pouch is nicely done adding to that impression.
Worth the investment? **
Sadly I think this back rest is expensive for what it is. This is because its main feature – the hot and cold pack – isn’t particularly effective. If this were improved, then I think the heat and soothe feature would be more effective and would represent better value for money. I would suggest using a mesh over the gel pack and providing a better filled gel pack so the heat (or cold) lasts longer.
Overall score *** 3.25
The shape of the back rest isn’t adjustable and I suspect it probably suits taller people better. If you find heat or cold pads relieve soreness in your back then this may be an option.
Buy your own Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support.
With thanks to ebuyer.com for supplying a sample Fellowes Heat and Soothe Back Support for our reviewer to try.
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