Do you have a keyboard that leaves you with wrist pain?
Are thinking of getting a new one?
With hundreds of keyboards present out there in the market with different specifications, ergo keyboards are quite a popular choice.
Should you buy an ergo keyboard?
Are they really worth spending money on?
Let’s find out.
Are Ergo Keyboards Worth It? (10 Reasons To Consider)
Yes, the Ergo keyboards are better than the standard keyboards in terms of better design, increased comfort level, portability, and many other factors.
However, they are much pricier than regular standard keyboards.
Here are the ten reasons to consider before you buy an ergo keyboard.
You might be wondering why a standard keyboard doesn’t provide us comfort while an ergonomic keyboard does.
Well, that is because of the shape these keyboards are designed in.
Ergonomic keyboards are usually well built and available in several designs and shapes to choose from, depending on your personal preference and body’s ease.
When you are typing on a standard keyboard, your whole body, particularly the upper half, becomes tense.
You attain a completely unnatural position as soon as you rest your fingers on the standard keyboard.
Your forearms become cramped, your fingers stretch at awkward angles, and every time you tap the keys with force to strike any letter, a minuscule shock wave passes through your delicate finger bones and joints.
If you are an arthritis patient, your fingers won’t even be able to bend.
As soon as you relax your hands and shoulders, they move out of the reach of the standard keyboard, right?
That is where an ergonomic keyboard plays its part and gains the limelight.
They come in different designs that can fit according to your most relaxed body posture.
For example, the split keyboard allows you to adjust the angles of the keyboard and typing, leading to a comfortable typing experience.
2. Avoid Typing Injuries
Using the keyboard and typing again and again despite the unnatural movements leads to incremental damage to the bone structure of fingers, particularly the carpal nerve.
The carpal tunnel is a passageway in our wrist that is closed by a ligament, and above it, the carpal bones join to form a carpal arch.
All these components, like the tunnel, bones, and ligament, combine to protect the carpal nerve.
However, all these components are placed very tightly.
When we type and repeat these unnatural movements over and over again, it leads to carpal tunnel syndrome and various other injuries.
However, when using an ergonomic keyboard, the carpal tunnel and carpal nerve are in the utmost relaxed position, reducing the chance of injuries, wrist pain, repetitive strain injuries, or carpal tunnel syndrome.
The plush design of these keyboards adds a lot of ease to your wrists, thus adding reprieve from different injuries.
3. Boosts Your Productivity And Typing
Ergonomic keyboards are known to increase users’ productivity and typing speed by a lot.
When you type on a standard keyboard, you become tired more quickly, and hence, you keep on taking breaks to relax and stretch your hands.
As a result, you keep yourself from being productive at your maximum potential.
On an ergonomic keyboard, initially, you will find a learning curve where you will understand how to use an ergonomic keyboard and develop a grip on it.
Soon after you conquer this phase and have mastered the usage of ergonomic keyboards, both your productivity and typing speed will increase.
You can write faster and finish tasks more quickly because your hands are angled in a comfortable position.
Similarly, since you can rest and relax in a comfortable position during typing, you feel less tired, thus increasing your productivity and working hours.
What can be a better bet than buying an ergonomic keyboard and giving a boost to your productivity?
4. Better Design
Where an ergonomic keyboard offers better ease and functioning, it also adds to functionality and design.
For example, these keyboards have various additional keys leaving you with a reduced need to use a mouse to navigate around the computer.
For example, an ergonomic keyboard has additional:
- Hotkeys around the keyboard allow you to navigate and move around the interface of the computer.
- Programmable keys add shortcuts to open various programs by just clicking them.
Apart from these, the ergonomic keyboard comes in various designs and versions like handheld, split, contoured, etc.
(For details, move to the next section).
5. Portability And Wireless Connection
If the nature of your work involves a lot of traveling and outdoor work, ergonomic keyboards fit your needs the best.
These keyboards come in different designs and styles and can easily be carried around.
In addition to portable design, they are wireless, eliminating the fuss of having to untangle and connect the wires, further adding to your ease.
6. Shoulder And Back Comfort
A standard keyboard tilts your arms somewhat in an inner upside-down V shape.
As a result, the chances to slouch both your back and shoulders increase by many folds.
On the other hand, when using an ergonomic keyboard, you keep the hands and arms in the position you find the most relaxing.
As a result, your back is straight and relaxed, leaving no strain or stress on it.
Similarly, when you change from the inverted V to some other posture, your shoulders are mostly rolled back, leaving you with a relaxed body and encouraging shoulder comfort.
7. Makes Workers Happy
Another reason ergonomic keyboards are a good choice, particularly for companies, is that it shows the workers and employees that you care for them.
It is human nature to care, respect, and be loyal to those who care for them as well.
Add to the ease of your employees by providing them with ergonomic keyboards.
It will increase their productivity and typing and help maintain a healthy working environment between you and your workers.
Research also claims that workers and employees love to work with an empathetic and caring employer.
Moreover, if your worker suffers from CTS or any other injury, here are a few ways it will cost you as an employer:
- Paid leave
- Doctor and treatment fees
- Loss of a productive employee
- Reduced productivity
- Risk of loss of time management and task completion on time
Therefore, it is wise to invest in an ergonomic keyboard and bring ease to your as well as your employee’s life.
Another feature that makes ergonomic keyboards stand out in the magazine is that you can personalize and customize the function of different keys according to your need.
For example, you can add shortcuts of your own choice and assign them to the keyboard.
For example, you can add “Return to display page” by clicking “Ctrl + X.”
This way, the next time you want to go back to the display page of the computer, you can simply press Ctrl and X, and there you go.
While there are a lot of plus points to consider while buying an ergonomic keyboard, it is better to look at the other side of the story, too.
Ergonomic keyboards are, although very helpful, advanced, and well built, they are way more overpriced than what they offer.
Where a good standard keyboard costs less than $100, the price of an ergonomic keyboard starts at nearly $200.
That is why some users claim that there is just hype about ergonomic keyboards, nothing more.
Here are a few reasons ergonomic keyboards are expensive:
- Less popular
- Involve lots of research
- Have a better structure that offers various health benefits
- Low production as not many people prefer to invest in ergonomic keyboards currently
10. Takes A Lot Of Time To Adapt
Lastly, switching from a standard keyboard to an ergonomic one involves a complete layout transition.
Thus, it requires some time to understand the features and get used to the new style of keyboard.
However, with time, you develop deep hands on it and can easily overcome this hurdle.
How To Choose an Ergonomic Keyboard?
Where ergonomic keyboards provide us with various advantages, choosing the right one that fits your needs is of utmost importance.
You simply can’t go and choose just any ergo keyboard.
There are multiple factors to look at.
1. Your Field Of Work
Before buying any ergonomic keyboard, the first thing to consider is why you need one and then choose accordingly.
Should a programmer or gamer buy a typing keyboard?
It would be useless to them.
It’s better to choose one according to your requirements.
- If you are a gamer, you should buy the ergo keyboard with special gaming keys like the handheld keyboard.
- If you are a typist, buy the one with a better typing experience and shaped like concave or thumb clustered keyboards.
- Similarly, if you are an accountant and deal with lots of numeric values, then the specially designed numeric ergo keyboard will fit your needs perfectly.
2. Keys Layout
Apart from the keyboard design, you have a variety of key layouts to choose from.
For example, if you need a keyboard for office work, the concave shape with QWERTY keys is the perfect option.
On the other hand, the keyboard with DVORAK keys is a better choice for gamers.
In addition to it, if you are an OCD patient and love to keep things clean, there is a category of special “Washable” Ergo keyboards to choose from.
3. Tiltness And Adjustability
The tilting and adjustability of keyboards are very crucial factors.
Most keyboards tilt upwards, increasing the chance of wrist extension.
Moreover, it is better to choose one with a keyboard tray.
4. Switch And Key Types
Another factor to consider while buying an ergonomic keyboard is your desired switch.
Switch refers to the spring mechanism present below the keys.
The two most common switches are mechanical and membrane.
Membrane switches are the ones present in your laptops mostly.
By contrast, the mechanical switches are way smoother.
The mechanical switches are further divided into key types that are:
- Blue keys that are noisy but tactile
- Red keys that work very smoothly
- Broken keys that don’t create any sound and yet offer a tactile bump
5. Wrist Rests
You can also decide whether you want an ergonomic keyboard with a wrist rest or not.
For some people, wrist rests add to comfort, while the same turns out to be problematic for others.
6. Wireless And Wired Keyboards
Last but not least comes the decision between wired and wireless keyboards.
If you don’t want the fuss of keyboards, wireless ergonomic keyboards are the right choice to make.
However, these keyboards interfere with other wireless devices, leading to lag.
Therefore, for gamers, a wired keyboard is a better option.
Apart from that, wireless keyboards either operate on battery or charging, thus limiting their operating time.
If the nature of your work requires active traveling, wireless keyboards are the best option to go for.
Different Types Of Ergonomic Keyboards To Choose From
If you are going to buy an ergonomic keyboard, it is important for you to learn about the variety of ergo keyboards to choose from.
Here is a quick description of each type.
1. Split Keyboard
The split ergo keyboards are the most common design used by most buyers.
It is very effective in preventing wrist pain, injury, and shoulder pain.
In the split design, the entire keyboard is divided into two halves, providing each hand with ample space and key well area.
Half of the keys are clustered on the left side, and the other half are clustered on the right side for the right hand.
The ample space, keyboard splitting, and layout allow the wrists to fit in the position in a naturally straight and relaxed position.
Another form of split keyboard is the latest version in which the entire keyboard is divided into two halves, joined by a wire only.
Therefore, you can adjust the distance and placement angle of the keyboard accordingly.
2. Tented Keyboard
On tented keyboards, the ergo keyboard is divided into two halves joined by a wire.
The inner portion of the keyboard is tilted upwards, and you can adjust the tilt degree according to your comfort.
The tented keyboards help to keep your arms and shoulders in a natural position where you are relaxed and don’t need to rotate much.
As a result, your shoulders and arms don’t get tense, and you don’t get fatigued easily.
3. Concave Keyboard
The concave keyboards are one of the weirdest-looking keyboards.
In these keyboards, the keys are placed at a relatively lower position, thus providing you with an armrest.
Moreover, the keys are arranged in a concave shape.
The best part of a concave keyboard is that you don’t have to stretch your fingers much while typing, thus allowing you to type for a comparatively longer time without getting tired.
4. Thumb Cluster
Thumb cluster keyboards are an updated version of concave keyboards where all the keys are placed in the two concave corners.
However, the control keys, like space, enter, shift, ctrl, alt, etc., are placed at the thumb position.
As a result, typing becomes easier and more comfortable for a lot of people.
5. Handheld Keyboard
A handheld keyboard is ideally made for gamers.
Their keys and designs are closer to the language of game controllers and are very portable, allowing users to move around the room and use them.
The latest and most upgraded versions of handheld keyboards come with trackball mouse functionality.
6. Tenkeyless Or Compact Keyboard
Last but not least comes the tenkeyless ergonomic keyboard.
However, remember that it is ideal for only those who don’t deal with number keyboards a lot.
These keyboards don’t have the side numeric keyboard pad, resulting in a smaller size.
Moreover, it reduces the distance of reaching out to the mouse, thus preventing your shoulder from excessive abduction.
Ergonomic Keyboards Vs. Standard Keyboards
Now that you are well up with the different types of ergonomic keyboards, let’s have a quick comparison between the regular keyboards and ergonomic keyboards to help find out which one is the better option.
|These keyboards reduce the risk of wrist injuries and back and shoulder strain.
|Standard Keyboards are known for developing CTS after long-term use.
|Typing and Productivity
|The keys are placed at angles that represent ulnar deviation, thus increasing both the typing speed and productivity.
|Less typing speed and productivity as the hands are stretched
|Comparatively larger, but come in different shapes and sizes that fit the need of almost all users
|These are small in size and very uncomfortable for people with broader structures.
|These keyboards are comparatively pricier and costly.
|Standard keyboards are cheaper.
|Ergo Keyboards are more comfortable due to the special design and placement of keys to reduce strain and stretch.
|Standard keyboards aren’t comfortable at all. They involve a lot of stretching and movement of fingers.
Ergonomic keyboards are an easy fix to all the problems you feel while using a regular keyboard.
They provide you with a better posture, and a more comfortable arm position, thus reducing the chance of wrist pains and injuries.
As a result, your productivity and typing speed increase.
Moreover, these keyboards come in various styles and designs that you choose from.
However, they are comparatively pricier, though the investment is worth the price.
Therefore, if you are tired of wrist pain, or back strain, get yourself an ergonomic keyboard, and enjoy the happy typing!