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Whether at home, on the road or at work: every day we use products that make our lives easier or more beautiful. But do these products also make your back easier? Discover all back friendly products with the "AGR- seal of approval" of the Healthy Back Campaign. Just click through - you will be surprised!

Car racing shells

Sporty yet back-friendly driving

Are you a sporty driver who occasionally likes to drive your own car on a racecourse? Then you may have thought about buying a racing seat. Today this is no longer a problem since shell seats approved for both road use and the racecourse are available. The key disadvantage: many shell seats are neither ergonomic nor back-friendly, and offer no individual adjustment possibilities whatsoever. Thus driving pleasure quickly turns into back torture.

High physical strain during sporty driving

Even normal driving is considered one of the worst forms of sitting by health professionals. Why? Since we can hardly change our sitting position while driving, we sit rather motionless behind the wheel – poison for our body in the long term. That is why a normal vehicle seat should permit a certain amount of movement while driving.

Requirements for the seat are different on the racecourse, since a whole other set of forces is acting on the driver. The track, driving style and road surface vary considerably, so the associated centrifugal forces, braking forces or vibrations of various frequencies need to be compensated. This is a task that aside from the vehicle has to be handled mainly by the seat.

The back-friendly racing seat

A back-friendly shell seat is based on the anatomy of the human back and its structures. This means it provides large-scale, inherently stable support for the rear, upper pelvic region and the lumbar spine, for example by means of compact yet adequate individual padding. One-sided strain on the intervertebral discs is thereby prevented, even over longer distances.

The shell also has to offer good shoulder and torso support and adequate freedom of movement for the arms. Defined lateral support, especially moulded shoulder support and an integrated headrest along with flexible padding elements that can be adapted to the driver’s needs establish the best conditions.

What else is important?

Seat depth adjustment is also vital. It ensures optimal sitting pressure distribution by providing an adequate supporting surface for the buttocks and thighs. Individual consideration of the seat height, seat angle and leg length is just as important for ergonomic sitting. The seat and sitting position must fit the driver.

A good sitting climate is important as well. Upholstery materials with temperature-regulating characteristics are preferred. A shell construction that facilitates good climate control, for example through correctly positioned ventilation slots, is optimal as well.

All this ensures safe and physiologically optimal sitting in the shell seat, even in extreme driving situations.


  • The shell seat must have a solid basic structure. This improves safety and is also a prerequisite for back-friendly sitting. An excessively yielding basic structure cannot offer sufficient support and may lead to a loss of control over the vehicle.
  • A shell designed for a racing sports driving style has to guarantee safe and physiologically optimal positioning while driving. It also has to provide adequate lateral as well as shoulder and torso support.
  • Spine-friendly moulding of the backrest and foam elements along with a sufficient backrest height are required (ideally to the top of the head).
  • Lateral supports on the seat and backrest (side bolsters) ensure a safe driving experience and must provide the driver with sufficient support. The padding of the lateral supports has to be individually adaptable to body conditions (such as the back width).
  • Correct and therefore safe positioning of the headrest relative to the back of the head needs to be possible. The distance between the headrest and back of the head should not exceed 3 cm. Intended only as a safety feature, the headrest should not be used as a support while driving.
  • The seat height also has to be adjustable. That is important for a good view.
  • Angle adjustment of the seat bottom ensures correct thigh support.
  • Adequate lengthwise adjustment of the entire shell seat is important for optimal pressure distribution on the seat bottom and comfortable operation of the pedals.
  • The adjustable seat bottom length (seat depth) enables correct adjustment to the driver’s thigh length, thereby optimising the sitting pressure distribution. The better the sitting pressure is distributed across the buttocks and thigh supports, the more comfortable driving will be – especially over longer distances. Full thigh support is optimal, but about two to three finger widths of space must remain between the seat and hollow of the knee to avoid putting pressure there.
  • An optimal sitting climate can for example be achieved through ventilation slots in the shell and climate-friendly upholstery materials.

Minimum requirements

  • Correct dimensions (back height, headrest, seat bottom)
  • Individual, large-scale lower back support
  • Adequate lateral support in the seat and backrest areas
  • Adaptable side bolsters
  • Seat length adjustment
  • Seat bottom depth adjustment
  • Seat height adjustment
  • Seat angle adjustment
  • Good sitting climate

Products in this sector with the AGR seal of approval




RECARO Automotive Seating
Stuttgarter Straße 73
73230 Kirchheim/Teck
Phone +49 7021/93 50 00
Fax +49 7021/93 53 39
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