Keyboards and Repetitive Stress Injury – An Experiment in Progress

GoldTouch Keyboard
My GoldTouch Keyboard configured in “Boring Mode”.

For at least two years now, I’ve been suffering off-and-on with pain in my arm when typing. This pain seems to be related to my neck, and when I apply a heating pad to my neck and take Varlarian root (an herbal relaxer I found years ago to deal with my low back problems), it usually gets better, but it doesn’t go away until I can pop my neck. In fact, once my neck pops, I feel relief go all the way down my arm and I can usually go the rest of the day without significant pain. I’ve assumed this was all caused by a car wreck I had in ’08 where my neck was stretched and the liniments in my neck were strained. Now, I’m rethinking the idea that the cause is in my neck.

Let me start a the beginning and work my way forward.

Years ago, I thought I had carpel tunnel and my psychical therapist showed me A) that it wasn’t carpel tunnel and B) how to alleviate that pain. Even after the pain subsided, I decided to use ergonomic keyboards from that point forward. I got a Microsoft Ergonomic Media keyboard with hotkeys for Windows 98/XP and wrote four novels with it (all unpublished, I wasn’t a great writer). By that time, many of the keycaps were worn smooth and the spacebar actually had a grove on it from my thumb hitting it so much. Then, sometime after novel attempt #4, the cord shorted out and I couldn’t buy a direct replacement, as Microsoft had discontinued that particular generation of product. Continue reading “Keyboards and Repetitive Stress Injury – An Experiment in Progress”