Computer users have to work with some kind of mouse and keyboard. Often, the use of these tools over long periods of time leads to repetitive motion injury.
Fortunately, there are more ergonomic variations available than ever before. The products in this article are very popular with those without an injury or movement challenge. However, their ergonomic nature and customizability has led us to utilize these products for a wide variety of users in our ongoing mission to provide assistive technology to the injured and disabled.
Kinesis Freestyle2 Keyboard
The Kinesis Freestyle2 is an award-winning split keyboard designed to address the ergonomic risk factors related to typing.
You will notice from the picture that the two halves of the keyboard are split. This allows a lot of flexibility with regards to where you place your hands.
The traditional placement of the keyboard (especially on a laptop) is not ideal for the human wrist and fingers over long periods of time. This design allows you to keep your hands at a more neutral angle as you type.
The Kinesis Freestyle2 features a familiar Windows layout and convenient hotkeys. There is a variety of variations available for Mac, Windows, and bluetooth connectivity.
Kinesis Advantage2 Mechanical Keyboard
When you look at the picture of the Kinesis Advantage2 Keyboard (to the right), you may be surprised at the layout. This contoured keyboard is designed in a way to provide maximum comfort and productivity.
Concave keywells are scooped into a bowl shape to reduce hand and finger extension and relax muscles.
Separating the keywells positions the arms at shoulder-width to keep wrists straight and perpendicular to the home row to reduce abduction and ulnar deviation.
The keys are arranged in vertical columns (rather than staggered) to better reflect the natural motion of your fingers.
The two keywells are “tented” at an optimal 20 degree angle moderately raising the thumb side of the hand.
The integrated palm supports reduce stressful bending of the wrists and provide a convenient place to rest your hands when you are not actively typing.
The thumb clusters include frequently-used keys such as Enter, Space, Backspace, and Delete to redistribute the workload away from your relatively weaker and overused little fingers to stronger thumbs.
What's more, this keyboard is a mechanical keyboard.
Are mechanical keyboards actually better?Most gamers prefer mechanical keyboards because they're quicker, sturdier, and more tactile. Tactility is the feedback that you get from pressing the key. This feedback is given through the clicking sound and the visual you see when your fingers press the keys, and they spring back and raise the keycap.
To the average end user, the significance of a mechanical keyboard might not be that obvious. Mechanical keyboards have specialized mechanisms under each key, that is like a spring, rather than a rubber membrane. For a very detailed description on the different types of keyboards, visit this post on the Kinesis website.
Evoluent Vertical Mouse
While you may think most of the computing action happens on the keyboard, it is frequently the mouse that is the real cause of injury for repetitive motion sufferers.
You may notice that it's 'vertical', which means your hand will remain in a 'handshake type' position as opposed to twisting downward to rest on top of the traditional mouse design.
Beyond the ergonomic design, the real benefit is when you get into the Evoluent interface and program the buttons to customize actions, strings of keystrokes, key combos, and much more.
Logitech MX Master Ergonomic Mouse
The MX Master 3 mouse is "designed for creatives and engineered for coders." With this mouse, you can work comfortably with a silhouette perfectly crafted for the shape of your palm.
Create, make, and do more intuitively with ideally-placed front/back, and gesture buttons – and a convenient additional thumb wheel.
Work Faster With App-Specific Customizations
The Logitech MX Master 3 is fully customizable in nearly every app you use – and you’ll work faster with predefined customizations optimized for your favorite apps, such as:
Adobe Premiere Pro
Final Cut Pro
Google Chrome and Microsoft Edge
The included software allows for the buttons to be customized to trigger actions, strings of keystrokes, key combos, and much more.
Get in Touch with Ergonomics Experts at Northwest
Northwest Ergonomics and Assistive Technology is here to help with your ergonomic needs. Our trained experts will consult with you to understand your specific needs and provide solutions that really work. We help people of all ages who have experienced an injury or other disability.
It is important to our caring specialists that you really get the benefit of these wonderful advancements in technology. For that reason we specialize in training and follow-up to make sure that everything is working as effectively as possible for you.
To contact us, use the form on our contact page, or call 206-707-8830