May the source be with you, but remember the KISS principle ;-)
Home Switchboard Unix Administration Red Hat TCP/IP Networks Neoliberalism Toxic Managers
(slightly skeptical) Educational society promoting "Back to basics" movement against IT overcomplexity and  bastardization of classic Unix

Preventing computer-related RSI

News Windows Keyboard and Mouse Utilities Recommended Links Programmers and sysadmins health issues Mouse elbow Windows Macrorecoders
Expect AutoHotkey ArsClip Clipboard managers Lua  
Logitech G510s Gaming Keyboard Logitech G110 Sidewinder Pro Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 Microsoft IntelliType Dell SK8135 Keyboard
Microsoft Windows shortcuts Keyboard keys remapping Logitech Wireless Performance Mouse MX MouseKeys Microsoft IntelliPoint Selecting the Best High End Programmable Multi-button Mouse
Orthodox Editors VIM -- VI-style Editor with folding capabilities Ctags code browsing framework Eastern Orthodox Editors (XEDIT/KEDIT/THE, etc) Foot pedals The Most Comprehensive Collection of Editor-related Humor
OFM Less is More:
 A rich functionality behind Spartan interface of Orthodox File Managers
  Sysadmin Horror Stories Humor Etc

Today  new type of  computer related workplace injuries are on the rise, and one of the most commonly reported injuries is elbow pain from computer use. Which is often called mouse elbow.  The second, less frequent disease is Carpal tunnel syndrome

When you work with mouse and keyboard eight hours or more each day it can cause problems for your health, especially for people after 40. Many people develop RSI in their mouse hand. This is a choric condition that restrict your activities. Pain typically is limited to certain movements. But the danger should not be underestimated.

The rules of avoiding computer-related RSI are very simple: Pay attantion to your tendons health by doing simple exersized during the day, do not overuse  computer, use optimal posture, improve your technique, use ergonomic equipment to the max, while limiting the load. 

Learn to use alternative hand as even a week of rest often produce dramatic ostive effect. Swimming also often help. Ping-pong also might be useful.  Tennis and gold are not: they can produce similar symptoms on their own.

Try alternative input sources such as speech recognition. But all of those advices are easier said that done, especially if you work in a stressful environments Unis system adminitrators and some categories of programmers often do.   Don't be afraid to ask about better accommodation. For example 1" think memory foam mats on which you can rest you elbows can be helpful, at least psychologically (and it is very important that you elbows are rested on a surface and are not "in the air" ).  Elbow support strip is also useful and does provide some relef id wered correctly. If you boss is scregy buy a pillow made from memory foam and cut appropriate slices yourself.

It is also important that computer should not be you primary hobby outside of work. So more healthy habits can help.

Here is a relevant quote from Repetitive Strain Injury How to prevent, identify, and manage RSI

The three primary risk factors are poor posture, poor technique, and overuse. These topics are discussed in depth in the section on prevention. In addition to these, there are several other risk factors to be aware of. While they may not cause RSI on their own, they can increase your risk if you already possess one of the three primary risk factors. The following list (adapted from Pascarelli and Quilter) lists several risk factors. You may be at risk for developing an RSI if you:

Consult Pascarelli and Quilter for further information.

At the same time RSI is  a catch-all term that applies to several medical conditions including Mouse elbow (or golf elbor -- Medial Epicondylitis ) and carpal tunnel syndrome:

See some interesting discussion at Anyone else here have killer tendonitis in your mouse arm

One basic measure to reduce tendonitis pain  is to reduce the amount of work performed by affected hand. Those reduction can include amount of typing, mousing, playing video games,  and playing games like tennis.

There two standard path that help to prevent and reduce computer-related RSI:

Changing work habits

In many cases RSI is self-inflicted wound. For example cradling telephone between the shoulder and the ear so that you can talk while you work with your keyboard and mouse is "a recipe for disaster". Working with mouse only when  your elbow is firmly positioned on your desk or on the arm of your chair if it is level with your desk is also important.

Improving your equipment

As for improving your equipment there are several areas where you can get positive result with minimal investment:

Behavioral changes


Top updates

Bulletin Latest Past week Past month
Google Search


Old News ;-)

[Jun 21, 2013] No More Mouse Meet the Future of Computer's Oldest Sidekick

Anyone with a smartphone or tablet, of course, can tell you that the end of the mouse is nigh. Consider Mycestro, the new Kickstarter-funded "3D mouse" from entrepreneurs David Greenspan and Nick Mastandrea. The Bluetooth-enabled device clips onto your index finger, letting you control your cursor with simple gestures. Imagine Tom Cruise in "Minority Report" flipping through screens with a flick of his hand; that's essentially what you would look like giving a presentation on your laptop or an Internet-enabled TV. Setting up the Mycestro isn't much harder than setting up a wireless mouse.

It's also extremely mobile. Even people who prefer not using trackpads are loath to bring a mouse into their local coffee shop. The Mycestro, which weighs about as much as a wireless earpiece, solves this problem by fitting easily in your pocket. Yes, it's convenient, but will consumers want to look like they're conducting an invisible orchestra while web-browsing? Early signs are positive: the Kickstarter project looks poised to smash its goal of raising $100,000 by Friday, March 29.

At only $79 during pre-order, it's in the same ballpark as a high-end wireless mouse - not cheap, but easily affordable for the motivated early adopter.

... ... ...

Mycestro is only one of the many nails in the mouse's coffin.

The Kinect, a motion-sensing device originally sold as an accessory to Microsoft's Xbox 360, has found robust demand among computer researchers and roboticists. It's not hard to imagine a variation of it interpreting voice and motion commands for all PCs in the future.

Tobii's Gaze technology wowed reporters at CES as they controlled an asteroid-blasting spaceship - with their eyes. Just attach a small bar to the bottom of your Windows 8 PC monitor and shift your gaze, stopping to concentrate on whatever you want to open or enlarge. Currently selling for $995, the Tobii Rex is meant mainly for developers, but that doesn't mean a more-affordable version isn't on the horizon.

[Mar 15, 2012] 9 Tips for RSI Prevention

May 30, 2010

You've read a dozen times about good posture & wrist position, but else can I do? We put together a short list of [creative] tips.

  1. Swap out your keyboard & mouse 3 times a day. This one comes from some Google engineers who have a daily rotation of peripherals. This forces your hands into more of a variety of hand positions which is quite beneficial. Remember, we're trying to make what you do all day less repetitive.
  2. Stretch more than just your forearms. A lot of problems higher up in the arm & shoulder areas manifest in other areas like your wrists (think about how acupuncture needles are placed in other parts of the body than the area in pain). A full range of stretching [yoga is excellent] in the upper body can make a big difference.
  3. Non-smoking smoke breaks. You don't have to be a smoker to have an excuse to step outside!
  4. Pay attention to your posture when you go to sleep. Are you curled up into a ball or stacking 3 pillows for your head at night? Good posture increases circulation, which [in theory] helps you extremities heal. Sleep accounts for 1/3 of your day, so give it thought around the clock.
  5. Create macros for two-key keyboard combinations. The fewer keys you press, the less stress on you fingers right? For example ctrl-C [copy], ctrlX [cut], ctrl-V [paste] can all be made single keystrokes by various keystroke macro programs out there, or by specialty keyboards such as the logitech g13/g15. We did a writeup on using the g15 to consolidate key combos to a single button here.

[May 30, 2010] The Handshoe Mouse - First Impressions

The buttons are very solid and have a nice click to them. If you have severe 'trigger finger' then you might want something with a softer click. I will say the right button is softer than the left, so it might be a manufacturing inconsistency. The scroll wheel is the same story. While it's has an excellent feel and is very high quality, it doesn't exactly glide like butter like some mice. This is a mouse oriented towards relieving wrist pains & hand aches more so than trigger finger. For people with both trigger finger and wrist problems, you might consider this mouse in conjunction with perhaps a foot pedal for the mouse click.The verdict? I like it a lot. The build quality is excellent and it has a nice weight to it. The downside is that it costs $130

... ... ...

Update: It's now been 3 months since I initially wrote this post. So far I think this mouse takes the crown in effectiveness against RSI. My wrist pains have mostly subsided and my fingers aren't cramping like they used to. It strikes a great balance between a vertical & horizontal mouse. I'm starting to think there's something concrete here, like this mouse might be the magic bullet. It's pretty funky & gets a lot of comments from my coworkers, but if you're not afraid to be different and you're serious about your RSI, then this mouse should be near the top of your list.

Recommended Links

Google matched content

Softpanorama Recommended

Top articles


Repetitive Strain Injury How to prevent, identify, and manage RSI

10 Simple RSI Prevention Tips



Groupthink : Two Party System as Polyarchy : Corruption of Regulators : Bureaucracies : Understanding Micromanagers and Control Freaks : Toxic Managers :   Harvard Mafia : Diplomatic Communication : Surviving a Bad Performance Review : Insufficient Retirement Funds as Immanent Problem of Neoliberal Regime : PseudoScience : Who Rules America : Neoliberalism  : The Iron Law of Oligarchy : Libertarian Philosophy


War and Peace : Skeptical Finance : John Kenneth Galbraith :Talleyrand : Oscar Wilde : Otto Von Bismarck : Keynes : George Carlin : Skeptics : Propaganda  : SE quotes : Language Design and Programming Quotes : Random IT-related quotesSomerset Maugham : Marcus Aurelius : Kurt Vonnegut : Eric Hoffer : Winston Churchill : Napoleon Bonaparte : Ambrose BierceBernard Shaw : Mark Twain Quotes


Vol 25, No.12 (December, 2013) Rational Fools vs. Efficient Crooks The efficient markets hypothesis : Political Skeptic Bulletin, 2013 : Unemployment Bulletin, 2010 :  Vol 23, No.10 (October, 2011) An observation about corporate security departments : Slightly Skeptical Euromaydan Chronicles, June 2014 : Greenspan legacy bulletin, 2008 : Vol 25, No.10 (October, 2013) Cryptolocker Trojan (Win32/Crilock.A) : Vol 25, No.08 (August, 2013) Cloud providers as intelligence collection hubs : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2010 : Inequality Bulletin, 2009 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2008 : Copyleft Problems Bulletin, 2004 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2011 : Energy Bulletin, 2010 : Malware Protection Bulletin, 2010 : Vol 26, No.1 (January, 2013) Object-Oriented Cult : Political Skeptic Bulletin, 2011 : Vol 23, No.11 (November, 2011) Softpanorama classification of sysadmin horror stories : Vol 25, No.05 (May, 2013) Corporate bullshit as a communication method  : Vol 25, No.06 (June, 2013) A Note on the Relationship of Brooks Law and Conway Law


Fifty glorious years (1950-2000): the triumph of the US computer engineering : Donald Knuth : TAoCP and its Influence of Computer Science : Richard Stallman : Linus Torvalds  : Larry Wall  : John K. Ousterhout : CTSS : Multix OS Unix History : Unix shell history : VI editor : History of pipes concept : Solaris : MS DOSProgramming Languages History : PL/1 : Simula 67 : C : History of GCC developmentScripting Languages : Perl history   : OS History : Mail : DNS : SSH : CPU Instruction Sets : SPARC systems 1987-2006 : Norton Commander : Norton Utilities : Norton Ghost : Frontpage history : Malware Defense History : GNU Screen : OSS early history

Classic books:

The Peter Principle : Parkinson Law : 1984 : The Mythical Man-MonthHow to Solve It by George Polya : The Art of Computer Programming : The Elements of Programming Style : The Unix Haterís Handbook : The Jargon file : The True Believer : Programming Pearls : The Good Soldier Svejk : The Power Elite

Most popular humor pages:

Manifest of the Softpanorama IT Slacker Society : Ten Commandments of the IT Slackers Society : Computer Humor Collection : BSD Logo Story : The Cuckoo's Egg : IT Slang : C++ Humor : ARE YOU A BBS ADDICT? : The Perl Purity Test : Object oriented programmers of all nations : Financial Humor : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2008 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2010 : The Most Comprehensive Collection of Editor-related Humor : Programming Language Humor : Goldman Sachs related humor : Greenspan humor : C Humor : Scripting Humor : Real Programmers Humor : Web Humor : GPL-related Humor : OFM Humor : Politically Incorrect Humor : IDS Humor : "Linux Sucks" Humor : Russian Musical Humor : Best Russian Programmer Humor : Microsoft plans to buy Catholic Church : Richard Stallman Related Humor : Admin Humor : Perl-related Humor : Linus Torvalds Related humor : PseudoScience Related Humor : Networking Humor : Shell Humor : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2011 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2012 : Financial Humor Bulletin, 2013 : Java Humor : Software Engineering Humor : Sun Solaris Related Humor : Education Humor : IBM Humor : Assembler-related Humor : VIM Humor : Computer Viruses Humor : Bright tomorrow is rescheduled to a day after tomorrow : Classic Computer Humor

The Last but not Least Technology is dominated by two types of people: those who understand what they do not manage and those who manage what they do not understand ~Archibald Putt. Ph.D

Copyright © 1996-2021 by Softpanorama Society. was initially created as a service to the (now defunct) UN Sustainable Development Networking Programme (SDNP) without any remuneration. This document is an industrial compilation designed and created exclusively for educational use and is distributed under the Softpanorama Content License. Original materials copyright belong to respective owners. Quotes are made for educational purposes only in compliance with the fair use doctrine.

FAIR USE NOTICE This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available to advance understanding of computer science, IT technology, economic, scientific, and social issues. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided by section 107 of the US Copyright Law according to which such material can be distributed without profit exclusively for research and educational purposes.

This is a Spartan WHYFF (We Help You For Free) site written by people for whom English is not a native language. Grammar and spelling errors should be expected. The site contain some broken links as it develops like a living tree...

You can use PayPal to to buy a cup of coffee for authors of this site


The statements, views and opinions presented on this web page are those of the author (or referenced source) and are not endorsed by, nor do they necessarily reflect, the opinions of the Softpanorama society. We do not warrant the correctness of the information provided or its fitness for any purpose. The site uses AdSense so you need to be aware of Google privacy policy. You you do not want to be tracked by Google please disable Javascript for this site. This site is perfectly usable without Javascript.

Last modified: March 12, 2019