Five reasons why you should trash your
standard flat keyboard once and for all
For many of us, typing is something we do all day, every day. In fact, most of us type more than we drive, watch TV, talk on the phone, or even eat. But how often do we really think about these seemingly benign, uninteresting contraptions we type on? Shouldn’t we take a closer look? The short answer: Yes, we should. Here’s the long answer.
The fact of the matter is, these standard flat keyboards we type on present a host of health and financial risks to both employees and employers. And few of us are aware of these risks, and how they are damaging our personal health and the health of the companies we work for.
Wait, it’s just a keyboard… It can’t be that bad, can it?
It can be pretty bad. Millions of people every year deal with the physical and mental fallout that comes from hours, days and years spent typing on a traditional keyboard. So while it may look like just an innocent object on your desk, there are many good reasons to dump your standard keyboard in the trash right now, and get something better.
1. Your wrists aren't flat, so why is your keyboard?
Simply put, a standard flat keyboard is unnaturally shaped. When you type, your wrists don’t bend the way a standard keyboard forces them to. And why would they? After all, the basic design and layout of the keyboard — one of the greatest inventions of the industrial world — really hasn’t changed much since its invention in the 19th century. “Ergonomics” wasn’t exactly top-of-mind back then, we assure you. It turns out there’s a cost to this unnatural design. After all these years, we now know that forcing human hands and wrists into the awkward angles that traditional keyboards require causes a great deal of physical damage over time, some of which can be downright debilitating. Which brings us to our next point...
2. Traditional keyboards lead to RSI's and CTS
When your muscles and tendons are under pressure for hours each day, they can suffer minor tears and other injuries, which lead to swelling in the area. These types of injuries are called Repetitive Strain Injuries, or RSIs. When the swelling pressures the carpal tunnel nerve, it can lead to pain, fatigue, weak grip, and tingling. This is called Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS). Left untreated, CTS can require surgery to alleviate these symptoms.
It’s not just Carpal Tunnel either. In the human body, everything is connected. Pain and poor positioning in your wrist can affect your entire forearm, which in turn affects your upper arm, which in turn affects your upper body, neck, and even the cranial muscles around your head. This can cause neck and shoulder aches as well as headaches. And if you’re hunched over that keyboard all day, symptoms only worsen. In this way, a problem that starts small can become very big, very quickly.
Try this: To illustrate the problem, hold your hands out in front of you with your palms flat. Now relax your arms and let your elbows rest in a natural position. Notice how your hands are no longer flat? Now place your hands on your keyboard as you normally would. Again, you’ll see that your hands have to splay out to the sides and your wrists have to bend outward in order to reach the keys. These contortions put your wrists at awkward angles, which in turn puts undue pressure on your muscles and tendons.
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3. Your healthy habits shouldn't be left at home
So many of us have embraced the fact that “healthy living” extends way beyond watching calories. It’s a holistic endeavor that can touch almost every part of our lives. Think of all the things people embrace to stay healthy: We run, bike, lift, stretch, do cardio, crossfit, eat, drink, yoga, meditate — even sleep — with our health in mind.
What do we do when we walk into the office? We leave all of those healthy habits at home, undoing all of that hard work by simply typing on an unhealthy keyboard. Even if you sit in the best chair, work at a standing desk, and run laps around the office every 30 minutes, that flat keyboard is still doing you harm.
4. Injuries keep you from doing what you love to do
Work today doesn’t look anything like it did 50 years ago — or even 10 years ago. We’re more mobile and self-powered than ever before, and we work with a passion. Losing time to injury means losing time to do what you love. From work-related things like writing, programming, and gaming to more meaningful things like kickboxing or playing with your kids. When pain keeps you from your everyday passions, you don’t get to be you — and that’s not fair.
5. Ergonomics keyboards aren't just smart. They're cool, too.
Admit it: we love cool office tech. And we love cool health tech, too. We wear it on our wrists, carry it in our pockets. Some of us wouldn’t mind having cool tech implanted in our brains. In this world of increasingly seamless integration between technology and the human mind, why do we spend our days typing away at generic beige clunkers on our desktops? Keyboards are a technology. You deserve ergonomic technology that is just as slick and cool as your other gadgets — and it should benefit you while looking great, too.
WHAT GOLDTOUCH CUSTOMERS HAVE TO SAY
“I love this keyboard. I have one on both my iMacs. They're adjustable in a lot of different ways and prevent
repetitive stress injuries for me. I'm a writer and when I begin a new book my quota is 5000 words a day.
I depend on these to keep my wrists and hands from hurting..”
New York Times best-selling Author, Karen Ranney
Visit goldtouch.com today.
Employers face all of the same challenges with standard flat keyboards as workers — after all, they type too. But they also have a unique set of reasons to ditch your standard flat keyboards for their employees.
Five reasons why employers should replace standard flat keyboard for their workers once and for all
There’s the old adage that “happy employees make for happy workers”. The opposite is true, too. Workers in pain don’t make for happy employees. But the negative effects of standard flat keyboards on the company bottom line run much deeper than that.
1. Slowed productivity
When employees are in pain, their minds aren’t focused on the job. This slows down productivity, increases distraction, and can make work far less efficient.
2. Decreased creativity and innovation
Workers who are in pain aren’t usually in a very creative mood either. Rather, their mentality tends to be more one of “getting by” and survival, (i.e. “I just have to make it through this next day.”) Those aren’t ideal conditions for brainstorming, doing innovative work, or for digging in deep to their work.
3. Workers compensation claims and OSHA fees
Workers compensation claims have been on the rise for white collar workers, and our digital devices have a lot to do with that. The fact is, when businesses don't provide office workers with top ergonomic equipment, they are opening themselves up to risk of costly workers compensation claims.
What’s more, audits from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) are simply no fun. They can be costly, too, if you’re not up to code, especially if you wind up with a hefty fine on your hands.
4. High absentee rates
The more pain an employee is in, the more often they’ll need to stay home to rest up. If their injury eventually requires surgery, that can lead to a long absence from the office as well. Teams with missing members are less productive, overworked, and can be resentful of each other, especially when the absent team member has unique expertise.
5. High turnover rates
From a larger wellness perspective, employees who don’t feel like their employers care about them won’t stick around for long. Something as simple as providing the correct ergonomic equipment to improve the way an employee feels at work can change an entire workplace culture. And as we all know, employees who stick around are committed to the company, invested in their work, and dedicated to growing their careers with the same employer. In contrast, companies with high turnover rates must constantly pour money into training and hiring.
Save your wrists. Save your budget. Call (855) 633-3138 to contact your Goldtouch representative today.
Ergonomic keyboards from Goldtouch
Just like exercising and eating right, improving the way we work is all about preventative care. With a Goldtouch keyboard solution, employees and companies can mitigate pain while preventing further problems from developing into big issues.
Adjustable Horizontal Plane
Unlike standard flat keyboards, Goldtouch keyboards pull apart in the middle using a patented, locking ball and lever design. This provides a full 0 to 30 degrees in which to find the perfect fit (i.e. the angle at which your hands can hover over the keyboard in a neutral position) without splaying either to the left or to the right.
Similarly, you can enjoy a full 0 to 30 degrees of tenting on the vertical plane. Vertical tenting creates the most neutral angle for your wrists.
Keys That Are Easy to Use
Keys with too much resistance can exacerbate problems over time by creating pressure and strain in your wrists, fingers and hands. With a Goldtouch keyboard, you’ll never have to over-press the keys. These low-activation keys are easy to press with a soft touch. Additionally, the layout is ideal for all hand types in terms of spacing, so that you can reach every key easily.
A Full Suite of Ergonomic Solutions
For many of us, we find ourselves in front of our computers and mobile devices nearly all the time. At Goldtouch, we provide a whole spectrum of ergonomic solutions to pair with your keyboard, including laptop and tablet stands, ergonomic mice and other technology peripherals, each designed to help you find the most comfortable and healthiest way for you to work — no matter where you are.