A few months ago, I started to experience a great deal of discomfort in my wrist, forearm, elbow, and upper arm when working on my laptop. This discomfort seemed to follow me wherever I worked, from home, to the airport, and even at my office in Ann Arbor. Interestingly, the discomfort escalated when I worked on highly repetitive tasks, like data entry. I realized the source of my pain was my mouse.
As you may know, there are many styles and sizes of computer mice on the market. Some are small, to accommodate the traveler or those with relatively small hands, while others are large. It turns out, I was using a horizontal mouse that was poorly designed. Enter the vertical mouse. Here’s how it helped me:
- Its vertical design enables the hand to work in an upright position (with the palm facing to the side and the thumb up), which rotates the elbow to a neutral position.
- Working in a neutral posture allows the larger muscles of the shoulders and back to perform most of the necessary movements, which takes pressure off the hand and elbow.
The vertical mouse may not be for everyone; some jobs require a great deal of precise hand or wrist articulation that other mouse styles are better designed for. It’s important to remember that the mouse you use should be comfortable and pain-free.