Recliner Height Guide

Many people enjoy recliners because of the comfort they offer. Instead of being forced to sit straight up, recliners allow you to ease back and lounge without having to lie all the way down. When choosing a recliner it's important to select one that offers the correct height. Many people feel shorter recliners aren't as comfortable as taller ones. Others find that taller recliners look too bulky.

Inviting chair
credit: Brand X Pictures/Brand X Pictures/Getty Images
Many modern recliners aren't as tall as older models.

Sitting Position

A recliner's height at sitting position is its tallest height. The height can vary depending on the size of the recliner. Many recliners are 40 to 60 inches tall in the sitting position. To find the recliner's sitting height, move the chair into the sitting position and measure from the bottom of the chair to its top.

Resting Position

The height of the recliner in the resting position, also known as the seat height, is computed by measuring the distance between the chair's bottom to the reclined head. The resting height is always lower that the sitting height. Many recliners have a resting height of about 18 to 22 inches. A lower resting height often reflects how far the chair will recline back. It can also represent a significantly smaller chair.

Kiddie Recliners

Recliners made for children are significantly shorter than traditional recliners. Many of these recliners are actually designed for toddlers and reach a sitting height of about 28 inches. Most recliners that are less than 35 inches tall are designed for children.

Selecting a Recliner By Height

To choose the right recliner height, allow the tallest person in your home to sit in the chair. The top of his head should not be taller than the top of the recliner when in the sitting position. Many modern recliners are shorter to provide a sleeker look. When testing a modern recliner, make sure the top of the recliner comes up to at least the top of the tallest user's neck. If you can't test the recliner, sit down in a chair and have someone measure the distance between the top of your head and the bottom of your back to find the sitting height you need.


Si Kingston

Si Kingston has been an online content contributor since 2004, with work appearing on websites such as MadeMan. She is a professional screenwriter and young-adult novelist and was awarded the Marion-Hood Boesworth Award for Young Fiction in 2008. Kingston holds a Bachelor of Arts in English from Mills College.