Maintaining a proper keyboard position whilst you’re typing is an important step, we all tend to forget. Without maintaining the correct position, you could cause short and long-term damages to the muscles and joints which run along from your fingers, wrist, up your arms and even into your shoulders. Many computer-related injuries are often caused by poor posture. Typing on a keyboard causes the tendons in your wrists to move back and forth. These tendons lie parallel to each other, so the back-and-forth movement creates friction, creating what is known as a microtrauma. Typical typing problems can range from wrist strain, carpal tunnel, rounded and slouched shoulders which can trigger acute neck and shoulder pain. Without the proper care and management of your posture, an acute problem can lead to a chronic problem, which you may feel the effects of long into the future.
Wrist Pain Due to Poor Keyboard Position and Solutions
The source of wrist pain isn’t always obvious and may not always be a cause of nerve strain in your fingertips. Although other factors can come into play, a combination of repetitive typing without resting and maintaining a flexed wrist as you type at your keyboard are the main culprits for wrist strain. There is an interconnected network of nerves which stretch from your fingertips to your neck. Sometimes pain in the neck or shoulder can cause problems down into your wrist or hand.
Solution: Keep your wrists straight as you type. Essentially, they shouldn’t be flexed in either directions or resting on the desk as you type Take regular breaks every 20 minutes and perform simple hand exercises such as wrist flexion back and forth and extensions periodically whilst you’re typing. If you get tired easily, use a palm pad to support the fleshy part of your palm, not your wrists.
Ergonomic and Proper Keyboard Position Typing Tips
Practice Typing Lightly
It’s not necessary to type with a lot of force to register a keystroke. Typing with a heavy-handed manner causes you to use unnecessary effort causing fatigue in your fingers. Try to practice typing lightly with a minimal amount of force.
Rest Your Fingers on the Home Keys
The position of your fingers as you type is just as important as the position of your wrists and palms. Ideally, each of your fingers should be resting on a specific key in the home row of the keyboard. The home keys of the QWERTY keyboard are A, S, D, F and J, K, L with the thumbs resting on the spacebar.
Consider Using a Mechanical Keyboard
The keys on a mechanical keyboard consist of large physical keys that are much more tactile and low resistance compared to those found on laptop keyboard, which are much flatter and spaced closer together. As a result, a mechanical keyboard requires less energy, less finger strain, are much more responsive and provide tactile feedback that better facilitated touch typing.