torso cushion

Engineering a torso cushion to counteract headrest angles

In this article we discuss the back cushion design from an engineering perspective, there are two possible paths to a solution for a headrest that pushes the head too far forward. Basically, something has to be repositioned: either the headrest, or the body. 

Path 1:  reposition the headrest

Of course, if the headrest has a tilt-adjustment this is the prime solution.  More manufacturers are introducing this feature; however, it is hardly a solution to get a different car simply for the headrest feature. 

Other scenarios discussed on YouTube and in several Car Forums, are to either:

  • remove the headrest and bend the posts, then reinstall the headrest;
  • remove the headrest and flip it backwards;
  • remove the headrest and throw it out.  

Granted, all of these “reposition” the headrest, however, they are deemed unsafe as they compromise the design integrity of the headrest as a whiplash protection device.  Furthermore, on many newer car models, the headrest can no longer be removed.

Path 2: reposition the body

A cushion designed to appropriately reposition the upper back can provide an ergonomic seating position with a straight neck alignment. 

The root-cause of the seating problem is the non-ergonomic angle created between the seat-back and the headrest contact point.  Many commenters on Car Forums suggest to tilt the seat back to deal with the headrest angle, that suggestion, however doesn’t change the relative angle between the seat back and the headrest, so it doesn’t solve the problem.

The design goal is to create an ergonomic neck angle by repositioning the torso.  A wedge-shaped torso cushion that works in conjunction with the seat tilt-adjustment effectively creates the desired angle and hence, an ergonomic seating position.   

Giraffe Cushion addresses the root cause of the headrest issue to provide a comfortable and safe driving position.


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