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Buying a Better Beach Chair

These seats won't hurt your back on your summer vacation

four different beach chairs on the beach

Peter Frank Edwards/AARP

En español | Sun-seekers, rejoice! You no longer need to break your back on your relaxing vacation. New beach chairs are loaded with modern conveniences and designed for comfort.

1. Kick back

With an extra-wide base, a range of reclining positions, a footrest, a cup holder and a phone slot, deluxe chairs are about as close as you can get to your family room recliner. Some even feature extra lumbar support. Or get one with a face-down option for maximum flexibility. Plow & Hearth Deluxe Zero Gravity Chair; $90

2. Lighten your load

You won't need the strength of Popeye to tote around an inflatable chair or lounge. They weigh around three pounds, inflate with a pump and collapse to fit into your beach bag. Ground stakes can keep the chair from blowing away. Added bonus: If you feel like floating in the water, your chair can do that, too. Hake Inflatable Lounger; $15

3. Get up and down

So many beach chairs are sand-huggers, which makes them difficult to get into and out of. Some new chairs sit up higher, are made to be roomy and can support you if you've packed on a few winter pounds. Copa Jumbo 4-Position Chair; $80

4. Take cover

An attached canopy can protect you from harmful UV rays. Even better: Look for a model that lets you adjust the top as the sun's angle changes; no need to get up and move the whole chair. Some come with cup holders for added convenience and a carrying bag to make transport easy. Bass Pro Shops Eclipse Canopy Chair; $40

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