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Keyboards and wrist rest: A writer’s guide to comfortable typing

Writers, coders or anyone who types a lot on their computer is often seen using quite magnificent keyboards, and wrist rests.

To the common folk, this seems an unnecessary luxury. What they don’t realise is the massive amount of keyboard pounding that these people do, and the stress that comes with it.

When you’re continually typing for hours on end, a considerable amount of stress builds up in the wrists. This stress can have severe long term consequences if not addressed.

Hence, such type of people uses mechanical keyboards as a must. Mechanical keyboards offer the best typing experience and speed with minimal stress to the fingers. However, they come with their own set of problems.

Mechanical keyboards are generally higher, which means if you’re typing from a desk (without a wrist rest) your wrists are at an upward slope. This upward slope can be harmful and builds up a lot of stress.

To counter this, most premium keyboards come with a wrist rest. A wrist rest generally is an elevated platform attached to the keyboard which acts as a support for your wrists.

Your hands are at an ergonomic height if you use a wrist rest. This makes typing a lot more comfortable and enjoyable.

Also read: The ultimate keyboard guide: Mechanical vs Membrane

Ergonomics: What’s the right way, what’s not

While using a good keyboard and wrist rest is crucial, it only is half the battle. The rest half is your hand position, your desk ergonomics, keyboard/mouse placement and sitting posture.

Your hands should always be curved over the keyboard with your thumbs hanging near the spacebar. Wrists should be at about the same height as the keyboard deck. Also, try and buy keyboards without the number pad, as such keyboards tend to put the letter keys off centre.

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If you’re a coder, your mouse placement also matters a lot. Since you’re always switching between your mouse and keyboard, mouse placement makes all the difference.

Ideally, you want your keyboard and mouse shoulder width apart. Make sure that both the peripherals are on a level surface and only a couple on inches high from your thighs. Also, be sure to choose the right mouse according to your grip type.

If you want to push things to the extreme, there are a number of ‘ergonomic’ keyboards available in the market.

These keyboards often come in weird shapes and sizes and claim to increase typing speed and provide a better experience.

In my opinion, as both a writer and a coder, these keyboards are in most cases, not required. They’re super expensive, to begin with, and have a learning curve. As you start getting more and more used to your specific keyboard, you’ll degrade at using normal keyboards.

With a proper ergonomic setup, a regular mechanical keyboard in most cases will suffice your needs.

All of these little things add up to a comfortable and enjoyable typing experience. Try them out and save your body the stress that comes with strenuous typing.

Also read: What is Keylogging? 6 ways to protect yourself

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