When you’re typing quickly, you’re probably focused on your hands and fingers, and where they are on the keys. But typing doesn’t just involve the muscles of your fingers, but also of your arms, your shoulders, your neck, and more. That’s why Typesy devotes an entire set of lessons to ergonomics, the science of adjusting workplace and workspace tools to best fit the human body. If you’re sitting correctly, with your keyboard and monitor and document display area all adjusted to your own particular physical needs, then you’ll reduce the stress on your body, which will help you type even faster. What’s more, you’ll also reduce the chances that you’ll develop one of the long-term problems like carpal tunnel syndrome that is often caused by overstressed tendons and muscles when you aren’t taking care of yourself.
Choosing a keyboard that fits you is a great way to help eliminate the problems associated with spending hours at your computer. Whether you use a laptop or a desktop model, you can look for keyboard layouts that are the most comfortable for you. Here are some suggestions for keyboard configurations that still use the standard QWERTY layout but also provide some relief for overstressed fingers, wrists, and shoulders.
The “Truly Ergonomic Keyboard” does a good job of keeping your hands and shoulders in a neutral position, but the [Enter] key has been moved to the center line, which means that you’ll be pressing it with your thumb rather than the little finger of your right hand.
There are many versions of the curved keyboard that allows your hands to both curl naturally inward and angle naturally upward, but this style isn’t to everyone’s liking. If you share your computer with a coworker, you may have to get used to switching out your keyboards when you start your shift.
To move your hands farther apart and into a more natural, forward-facing position, a split keyboard like this one can give you just that little bit of extra space you need to keep your shoulder and neck from getting tense, and because it’s not curved up in the middle, some people find it easier to use.
The ultimate split keyboard is one like the Kinesis Freestyle 2. Since bringing your hands together onto a small keyboard can be difficult for people with wide shoulders or bodies, this style of keyboard provides the most flexibility in creating the space you need to not angle your hands to an unnatural degree. However, because the two halves of the keyboard can be placed at different distances from your body, you’ll need to pay more attention to how you’re sitting so that you don’t twist your spine.
Many employers will pay for ergonomic equipment, so if you’re having problems after long days of typing at your desk, ask if you can explore some of these different tools to help you with your job.