The Herman Miller Embody is billed as a chair that "keeps your blood and creative juices flowing." The seat's flexible, membrane-like back responds to a user's movements, but the feature is polarizing -- while most like the unique support mechanism, others say they need more lumbar support. Customers with more traditional tastes may find the futuristic design as off-putting as the very steep price tag, but most reviewers praise the chair's sleekness and obvious build quality.
Seat back conforms to the user. The Herman Miller Embody is available in two types of multilayered, breathable fabrics. The upgraded Balance fabric (Est. $200) is designed for increased airflow over the base fabric. Many reviewers praise the innovative pixelated seat back, designed to automatically adjust and conform to the user's movements; Herman Miller says the feature can improve blood circulation. However, a handful of owners say this flexibility translates into subpar lumbar support. Additional adjustments include tilt limiter and tension; seat height and depth; armrest height and width; and back fit. There is no headrest, and no option to add one.
Lighter fabrics discontinued. With a weight capacity of 300 pounds, the Herman Miller Embody can accommodate larger frames. Reviewers say the build and fabric quality is superior, though the company did discontinue a couple of brighter and lighter fabric hues after complaints that the seats absorbed dye from users' clothes. Herman Miller backs the chair with a 12-year warranty and a satisfaction guarantee that allows customers to return the chair for a full refund within 30 days. The company generally receives positive customer-service reviews and provides a question-and-answer forum on its website.
This comparison of the Steelcase Leap, Herman Miller Embody, Herman Miller Mirra, Knoll Generation, Humanscale Freedom and Ikea Markus places the Embody second behind the Leap. The reviewer praises its flexibility and breathability, but says the modern look may be off-putting for some, and the price is too steep.
Review: Best Office Chair Is the Steelcase Leap, Kyle Vanhemert, Dec. 3, 2012
LifeHacker.com readers pick their five favorite office chairs for this roundup, which looks at chairs from Herman Miller, Steelcase, Raynor and Ikea, and vote on their favorite. The Embody places third. The reviewer praises its flexible, adjustable back. However, the price is steep, and some say the lumbar support is weak.
Review: Five Best Office Chairs, Alan Henry, Sept. 9, 2012
Owners give the Embody 4.1 out of 5 stars in about 20 reviews. Most praise the futuristic design, spinal support and adjustability, saying the high price was worth it. A few reviewers complain about back pain and subpar lumbar support; one says the fabric soaked up dye from his jeans.
Review: Embody Chair by Herman Miller, Contributors to Amazon.com, As of June 2013
4. Mother Nature Network
This roundup looks at five chairs from Herman Miller, Knoll, Humanscale, Steelcase and Haworth, focusing on ergonomics and green features. It does not compare them. The Embody is praised for its spinal conformability, which supposedly helps circulation, as well as the layered seat and adjustability options.
Review: 5 Ergonomic Desk Chairs That Are Good for Your Body and the Planet, Matt Hickman, June 11, 2012
This roundup looks at five popular office chairs from Steelcase, Herman Miller and Humanscale but does not compare them. The brief review praises the Embody's lower-back support, modern look and narrow seat back, which allows for freer arm movement.
Review: High End Office Chairs, Abe Abbas, Not dated