Why you should buy a vertical mouse

Why you should buy a vertical mouse

You’ve probably been using computer mice for over 30 years (or for as much of 30 years as you’ve been alive). So it might come as something of a shock to learn that, as Steve Jobs might have said, you’re holding it wrong.

That, at least, is the opinion of many ergonomic experts and people who treat repetitive-stress injuries. When you use a regular mouse for many hours a day, you’re doing two terrible things to yourself:

  • You’re twisting your arm inward to make your hand flat. This pronation tightens the joint space of your two forearm bones, which is unnatural and, eventually, can be painful.
  • The weight of your arm is on the underside of your wrist, pressed against the desk (especially if you move the mouse using your wrist as a pivot). You’re squishing the carpal tunnel, the tiny tube that lets your median nerve run from your elbow to your hand. Enough of that, and you get the pain and tingling of carpal tunnel syndrome.

There’s a fairly brilliant solution to all of this: Use a vertical mouse. To understand the concept, imagine rotating your standard mouse like this:

Imagine if you could rotate your mouse hand: that’s the idea.

Now your hand is in a more natural position all day, like you’re shaking hands or holding an ice-cream cone — and it’s virtually impossible to rest your wrist on the desk. You’re encouraged to move the mouse from the elbow, which takes all the performance anxiety away from your wrist.

In some companies, vertical mice are standard-issue equipment, just to avoid employee problems and workman’s-comp claims.

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