Rocking Chair Dimensions and Guidelines (with Pictures)

The rocking chair is steeped in American history and is sometimes regarded as old-fashioned. However, many different types of rocking chairs would fit seamlessly into modern interior decor, with the added benefit of being able to lull you gently to sleep.

Rocking chairs were first created with a pair of ice skates tied to a chair in the 16th century, and a few years later, the “rocking chair” term manifested. Today, rocking chairs are considered essential amongst new mothers to help soothe their babies, and they are also a popular outdoor furniture item to have on a balcony or verandah.

The Standard Dimensions of a Rocking Chair

Standard Rocking Chair Dimensions

Rocking chairs vary in weight, with some being sturdy and extremely difficult to move around, and most weighing about 15-45 pounds.

Rocking chairs will most likely have a 26-30 inches width and a 37-45 inches length. Seat height is also an important aspect to look at with rocking chairs, as shorter people will desire different seat heights from much taller people. Sixteen inches in height will suffice for a shorter person, and 17-17.5 inches will be much more appropriate if you are taller than average.

These chairs can be placed on wood, tile, and other floor spaces and function well, but they are at their best when placed on a rug or carpet. You should also consider your clearance space since these chairs need enough room at the front and back to give you their best performance.

Children’s rocking chair dimensions

A child’s rocking chair will have significantly different dimensions from the standard adult rocking chair. These types of rocking chairs are designed to be used by children, and make a lovely addition to a nursery or children’s bedroom. The average full height of a children’s rocking chair, such as the IKEA Sundvik rocking chair, is 22.5 inches.

Seat heights are 11 inches, being the perfect height for children to climb onto without risking injury. The width of a children’s rocking chair should be around 14 inches and the depth around 27 inches, including the rocking frame.

Cracker Barrel rocking chair dimensions

Cracker Barrel rocking chairs are one of the most popular types of rocking chairs, both as outdoor furniture and interior furniture. These traditional style chairs provide modern comfort and an old-world aesthetic.

The typical dimensions for a Cracker Barrel rocking chair are 48 inches in height, 26 inches in width, and 34 inches in depth. 

Aldi rocking chair box dimensions

The box rocking chair from Aldi is one of the most affordable options for new parents when it comes to rocking chairs and nursing chairs.

This is a padded version of the traditional rocking chair, with back support, armrests, and a solid wooden frame. The dimensions for the Aldi rocking chair are 29 inches in width, 34 inches in height, and 39 inches in depth.

DIY Your Chair

Rocking chairs are not a one-size-fits-all and so if you’re looking for optimum performance and comfort, then your best option is to make one yourself that fits the parameters you look for in your chair.

You’ll need to make measurements accurately, such as “Seat to the Top of Your Head,” “Back of Your Bottom to the Underside of the Knee,” and width of the shoulder. The wood used should be flexible, and you need to get the technique down. Multiple YouTube videos can get you through this process of making your rocking chair.

Common Types of Rocking Chairs and Their Space Requirement

Traditional rocking chairs

Traditional rocking chairs

Often designed with wood, these family heirlooms are what first pop up in people’s minds when the rocking chair is mentioned. Traditional rocking chairs work well in a nursery or on a porch.

They require a lot of floor space because of their massive curved base but are the most durable out of all the chairs on this list, as they are not highly prone to wear and tear.

Gliding rocking chair

Gliding rocking chair

The gliding chair is the modern version of rocking chairs, and these tend to be more comfortable and more expensive than traditional rocking chairs. The traditional rocking chair was reinvented with legs that are not as curved but manage to rock the chair along a flat plane.

It’s because of this complex mechanism that you’ll find that these are a lot more pricy than standard rocking chairs, and they are very weighty and therefore difficult to move.

Outdoor rocking chair

Outdoor rocking chair

Going camping can be more enjoyable with a relaxing chair that allows you to lean back and look at the stars. Outdoor rocking chairs are very lightweight and easily folded and moved to games, music festivals, or any other outdoor festivities. These usually even have cup holders for your coffee mug or beer while you’re settled outside enjoying your day.

Although rocking chairs might not be what initially springs to mind when you think of outdoor furniture, these types of rocking chairs can be very functional, and make a nice addition to your outdoor activities.

Reclining rocking chair

Reclining rocking chair

A reclined chair on its own is a masterpiece for comfort; adding that mechanism to a rocking effect makes it a double threat. Simply release the chair’s catch, and you can lean far back and relax while rocking yourself back and forth.

A reclining rocking chair is designed carefully to ensure that you’re not too far back, and this attention to safety makes this one of the more expensive pieces on this list.

Spring rocking chair

Spring rocking chair

These appear like a typical traditional chair, but the back-and-forth movement is supported by springs and not a circular base.

This mechanism is pretty complex; thus, even its movement materials are tucked away underneath the chair to avoid accidents with children and pets. This style adds bouncing to the experience and is best suited for outdoor spaces.

Swivel rocking chair

Swivel rocking chair

Swivel chairs are known to be office chairs with a rotating mechanism; however, innovations allow both mechanisms to function in one chair, increasing comfort.

Swivel rocking chairs are great when watching movies and playing games, giving you a relaxing feeling that flees all your day’s stress. Most of these come in elegant designs that are much more comfortable and can easily fit into your contemporary house design.