General Question

justn's avatar

Do ergonomic keyboards really help?

Asked by justn (1382 points ) November 30th, 2008

Right now I have Logitech s510 Cordless Desktop (here it is on Logitech’s websit: http://lin.cr/bkl) which I love because of its low profile media keys on the left and right, but when I spend a lot of time typing (when doing homework) my wrists get sore.

So, I’m wondering of those fancy split ergonomic keyboards (like this one: http://lin.cr/bkm) really help with wrist fatigue.

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8 Answers

jtvoar16's avatar

YES! FOR ALL THAT IS HOLLY ON THIS PLANET, YES!

I use one whenever my wrist start to hurt so bad, I can’t bend them, and I can keep typing!

El_Cadejo's avatar

I dont know about the first keyboard, but the split ones are horrible. It really didnt make much of a difference at all for me(as far as fatigue goes), and actually made typing fast more complicated.

gailcalled's avatar

deck the halls with boughs of holy?

jtvoar16's avatar

OMG. I just realized my mistake…
/blush
/cry
/wrist
/laugh (Not cause my wrist is cut, but because every time I have to spell “Holy” I spell “Holly.” No matter how hard I try, I always fail at that one. And “Wrapping” I sometimes spell, “Raping.” Don’t know why, I just do.)

andrew's avatar

Yes, they really do.

I’ve used both the split version and a true ergonomic keyboard when I had bad tendonitis in college.

However, nothing is better for you than WRIST BREAKS! Get wrist-break software and mind it. Your wrists will thank you!

benseven's avatar

I have never user a split ergonomic keyboard, but I would recommend trying out the shallow keys on the most recent iteration of the Apple aluminium keyboard – solidly built but a lot less bashing needed to type.

stewartwb's avatar

I have found that split keyboards, like the M$ Ergonomic 4000 (or the wireless 7000 set) work great for me when I am typing 4–6 hours a day. However, there are things you can do to make your existing keyboard easier on your wrists.

First, don’t raise the feet at the rear of the keyboard, as this forces you to bend your wrists even further in the wrong direction. Make the keyboard as flat as possible, or even reverse-tilt (up to 7 degrees), to allow your wrists to rest in a more natural position.

Second, consider an adjustable (articulating) keyboard tray, which will allow you to position the keyboard closer to your lap and adjust the tilt precisely.

Third, as already mentioned, frequent breaks are essential.

While my experience with split ergonomic keyboards has been good, I have learned that what works for me can be intolerable to others. Be prepared to return one or two for a refund before you find one that works for you.

I hope this helps.

Ralphc's avatar

The reason that your wrist becomes fatigued is that the tendons and soft tissue in your wrist are either in the incorrect position for typing or being ‘forced’ to stay in one position that it doesn’t like. Your wrist is no different to any other part of your body that is being stressed by fatigue. If you think of it, your wrist is in the most relaxed position when it is in a straight line and not ‘bent’. So, depending on how you sit and type will depend on how your wrist reacts to all of this. Keep your wrists in as straight a line as possible, without having them bent (sideways), using either an ergonomic keyboard or a standard one. Ergonomic ones take some time to get used to, but they do work. Take frequent breaks. Two minutes for every 15 minutes of typing. Do small ‘wrist excersises’ -pump your fist to get the blood flowing. Spread your fingers out and in. Move your keyboard around (change it’s position) because that will change the position of your wrists. Try not to bend your wrist up or down either – if you can use an articulating keyboard (one that moves up/down and sideways) that will help a lot.

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