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Human Factors and Ergonomic Resources
Input Devices Need to Fit You… An Overview of Your Wrist (including exercises to strengthen)
What you need to know about using Input Devices.
When people think of injuries from working at the computer, often, the first one that comes to mind is carpal tunnel syndrome. Repetitive strain injuries are unfortunately becoming commonplace amongst people who spend most of their day at a computer. There are several strategies to minimizing your risk and keeping your wrist and hands happy!
Keep wrist in neutral position-keep the wrist straight, a 30-45 degree angled position with fingers gently curved.
Keep your wrist and hand musculature strong by remembering to exercise and stretch them as well as larger muscles of the body.
Use Your Muscles- don’t rely on the ligaments and tendons, but actually use the muscles of the fingers and hands to do your typing for you.
Take Breaks-Taking a computer break for both your posture and for your hands is a good idea at least every 30 mins. incorporate stretching into this min break.
Having a keyboard that splits & splays so you can type without putting additional stress on your tendons and ligaments can be helpful. Ergonomics Keyboard that we suggest are the Kinesis Freestyle2, Goldtouch, and OysterKeyboard.
Mouse rules- don’t use a wrist rest while actively typing r using the mouse, a wrist rest is for just that, resting the rest in between active use of the wrist. Move the mouse from your elbow, don’t flick your wrist to move your mouse. Use a mouse that fits your hand and if you are left handed make sure you have a left handed mouse.
To truly find the most comfortable and non-stressful position is to replicate the same posture/position while mousing that you have when your hands are hanging by your side when standing. As mentioned earlier, this position will usually be between 30-45 degrees while mousing. There are very few mice on the market that can keep your hand/wrist in a 30-45 degree position. If you view the diagram below you can see where your mouse falls in alignment.
The all new OysterMouse standard and large version will fit perfectly in your hand while allowing you to gently curve your fingers. With its five possible positions, you will find your ideal comfortable and stress free wrist position.
Now that we have correctly identified proper wrist positioning let’s be proactive & incorporate the following Wrist Exercises into our regular workday schedule.
Start with an open hand
Gently close fingers and bring thumb to the outside of fingers
Repeat 5 times on each hand
Start with closed fist and thumb up. Rotate thumb clockwise and then counter clockwise. Repeat 5 times each direction
Bring hands together in front of the heart in a prayer pose. Press the palms of both hands together. Hold for 5 breathes. Repeat 5 times
With one hand gently pull the opposite hand down as is picture. Hold in this position for 5 breaths stretching the wrist. Alternate hands. Repeat 5 times on each hand
Take on hand and gently pull the fingers back towards the wrist as in the picture. Gently hold and stretch the wrist for 5 breaths. Repeat 5 times on each hand
Start with your palm up to the ceiling. Gently turn the palm over so it is facing the floor. Repeat this 5 times on each hand
Keeping hand in neutral position with palm facing the floor. Move hand sideways, thumb inwards and then pinky outwards as in picture. Repeat 5 times in each direction. Repeat 5 times on each hand.
Should you have questions about the Oyster Mouse or other specific needs please do not hesitate to contact us at 877-907-8688, firstname.lastname@example.org or via live chat. About the author, she attended UT Austin graduated with a degree in Biology with honors. She graduated from Texas Women’s University with a Master’s In Physical Therapy. She has worked in a variety of setting including: orthopedics, acute care, pediatrics, wound care, trauma, as well as ICU and the Neuro ICU. Her specialization is in chronic pain management and she was the supervising therapist at an out patient multi -disciplinary chronic pain management clinic for 7 years. She was in charge of community and physician education and training on chronic pain management and has spoken at The Texas Pain Management Society physician’s education panel. Her goal is to help clients help themselves with information, education, and a one on one approach with my physical therapy in order to change their physical conditioning and ultimately their health. To speak with Ms. Patel please contact her at email@example.com.