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Vertical Mouse?

Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club ChampionA fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
So, I think I've been getting carpal tunnel (or some other RSI), and have been considering buying one of those vertical mice thingamajiggers. I was wondering if anyone here has any experiences with them, and whether or not they feel it's worth the investment, what brands I should look at, etc. etc. etc.

So far I'm looking at the Evoluent Vertical Mouse 3.

However, it looks like Microsoft has something similar in the Natural Wireless Laser Mouse 6000.

Any information any of you can give me regarding this would be much appreciated, as Google seems to be failing me in this regard...

a.k.a. Antaeus or Nubmonger

-A digital receiver in an analog world.
Inquisitor77 on

Posts

  • DelzhandDelzhand Noxalas! Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I call BS on the skeletal diagram in the first link. The angle of rotation is spread across your wrist, elbow, and shoulder, not just your wrist.

    I'm not knocking the product, but that's straight-up marketing right there.

    Delzhand on
    Final Fantasy XIV: Heavensward - November Elspeth (Sargatanas)
  • xzzyxzzy Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    As a guitar player, the lesson drilled into me is that the most important thing you can do is keep your wrist straight. Carpal tunnel is caused by irritation in the channel in your wrist where all the tendons pass from the forearm to the fingers.

    If you care to illustrate this, hook your two middle fingers together with your wrists straight, pull apart. Feels nice and strong, right? Now bend one wrist so it's bent 90 degrees and repeat. Feels much weaker. When you wrist is bent all those tendons are rubbing against the walls of the hole in your wrist, which after long periods causes RSI. The odd angles also sap your strength.

    Point I'm trying to make is you don't need a vertical mouse. It's snake oil. What you need to do is analyze your work environment and pay attention to the angle of your wrist. Hang your hand by your side and let it relax. Then lift your hand back to your mouse, and if you have to twist your wrist to use the mouse.. something's wrong with your seating.

    Ideally, your arms should be supported at the elbows on some armrests. Putting weight on your wrists will also cause problems. Your palm and wrist should be "floating".

    xzzy on
  • VistiVisti Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    xzzy wrote: »
    As a guitar player, the lesson drilled into me is that the most important thing you can do is keep your wrist straight. Carpal tunnel is caused by irritation in the channel in your wrist where all the tendons pass from the forearm to the fingers.

    If you care to illustrate this, hook your two middle fingers together with your wrists straight, pull apart. Feels nice and strong, right? Now bend one wrist so it's bent 90 degrees and repeat. Feels much weaker. When you wrist is bent all those tendons are rubbing against the walls of the hole in your wrist, which after long periods causes RSI. The odd angles also sap your strength.

    Point I'm trying to make is you don't need a vertical mouse. It's snake oil. What you need to do is analyze your work environment and pay attention to the angle of your wrist. Hang your hand by your side and let it relax. Then lift your hand back to your mouse, and if you have to twist your wrist to use the mouse.. something's wrong with your seating.

    Ideally, your arms should be supported at the elbows on some armrests. Putting weight on your wrists will also cause problems. Your palm and wrist should be "floating".

    Second.

    Also: Stretching the right way. Alternatively, or rather additionally, look at wrist strengthening excersises either via bodyweight excersises or something like a gyro (powerball, I think it's called). As xzzy mentioned, this is something that gets drilled into you as serious instrumentalist and if you don't abide by it, you will feel the pain.

    But I have to disagree slightly, while a regular mouse can work very well if you adjust your environment correctly, some products will enforce this further and that is never a bad thing. Something like posture can very quickly be dismissed when you're stressed or in a rush while working at your computer and having an input that doesn't hinder your actual work remind you of correct posture or even enforce is good. And some of them do help, but that doesn't mean that you don't have to take a stern look at your work environment - anything other than that will be minimal gain, but still gain.

    I switched to trackballs because of wrist pain a while back and quickly found that they didn't fix the underlying problem at all. I also looked at vertical mice and the ones you posted and I looked at muscle diagrams and found them to be lacking. They didn't seem to lie naturally in your hand at all, but rather just regular mice, just slanted. The only one I seriously considered was the zero tension mouse, that requires you to only manuveur with your arm rather than your wrist and keeps your wrist at an actual natural, vertical position, rather than the slanted one that seems popular, but in my mind seem to be counterproductive.

    Hm, I had another point, but I forget. As mentioned before, though, exercises does help. Being stronger is always better, when dealing with body pain and even tendon problems, since having strong wrists and forearms is an excellent support system for your hand (duh).

    edit: forgot the link to the powerball excersize. I have one, and it's pretty good for toughening up basically your whole arm when training for endurance: http://www.powerballs.com (But man, what a shoddy website)

    second edit: Also, don't just look at your wrist angle, but also the angle of your forearm itself. Ideally resting on something at a 90 degree angle not too far from the body.

    Visti on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Inquisitor77Inquisitor77 2 x Penny Arcade Fight Club Champion A fixed point in space and timeRegistered User regular
    edited March 2009
    In that case, are there any handy diagrams you guys can refer me to so I can adjust my workspace to be more ergonomically correct? There seem to be 27 different schools of thought on what the "proper" alignment is, particularly with regards to arm angle on keyboards/mice. I thought I was doing it correctly by having my arm slightly elevated above the mouse, but from what you're telling me it should be as close to "level" as possible?

    Thanks a bunch for the feedback guys. Given how much we all use computers, I'm surprised there isn't more consistent literature out there...

    Inquisitor77 on
    a.k.a. Antaeus or Nubmonger

    -A digital receiver in an analog world.
  • EgoEgo Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Visti wrote: »
    ...http://www.powerballs.com (But man, what a shoddy website)
    NSD Powerball is a revolutionary new Gyroscope which literally explodes with mind numbing inertial forces once you activate its internal rotor!

    I'll have to be very careful not to accept strange glowing balls from messy haired men who look far more sincere than they have any business being ;).

    Ego on
    Erik
  • kralizecckralizecc Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    I've used kensington trackballs for about 13 or 14 years, this is absolutely the best input device I've ever used.
    http://us.kensington.com/html/2200.html

    kralizecc on
  • VistiVisti Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Ego wrote: »
    Visti wrote: »
    ...http://www.powerballs.com (But man, what a shoddy website)
    NSD Powerball is a revolutionary new Gyroscope which literally explodes with mind numbing inertial forces once you activate its internal rotor!

    I'll have to be very careful not to accept strange glowing balls from messy haired men who look far more sincere than they have any business being ;).

    I didn't even know they were taking the EXXTREME marketing route with those - it completely undermines any product.

    Visti on
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • SzechuanosaurusSzechuanosaurus Registered User, ClubPA regular
    edited March 2009
    kralizecc wrote: »
    I've used kensington trackballs for about 13 or 14 years, this is absolutely the best input device I've ever used.
    http://us.kensington.com/html/2200.html

    I used a Kensington trackball so much that I eventually wore out the bit of plastic on the button that clicked the microswitch so the button stopped working.

    I'm thinking about getting a new trackball though. The accuracy on them was great. That old Kensington I wore out I used to play right through Deus Ex as a sniper.

    Szechuanosaurus on
  • xzzyxzzy Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    In that case, are there any handy diagrams you guys can refer me to so I can adjust my workspace to be more ergonomically correct?

    Not that I've seen. The training I've had says: the basic plan is you should have a seat where you can have your butt at the back of the chair, your feet flat on the floor, and your arms hanging loosely at your sides. There should be arm rests right about where your elbows sit, giving them some support. Your keyboard should be about level with your hands, with one of those sliding keyboard trays if necessary. Posture should be proper, with your back rested comfortably against the chair.

    The other thing that got drilled in during training (I work for the government, it's actually a job requirement to learn this crap) is to take breaks. Get up at least once an hour to get some water or something, and look up some wrist stretches. Arm and back stretches can help too.

    The basic lesson is that the human body is designed around constantly moving. If you're going to be sitting still for long periods, you need to look into how to reduce tension on all your joints. And if all else fails, get up and move around every so often.

    xzzy on
  • DHS OdiumDHS Odium Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Yes, I'd recommend a trackball. I had wrist problems a couple of years ago, and a trackball helped. of course, if you play heavy mouse using games, like an FPS games, it's a little difficult. I'm back to a normal mouse no, but the trackball definitely worked.

    DHS Odium on
    Wii U: DHS-Odium // Live: DHS Odium // PSN: DHSOdium // Steam: dhsykes // 3DS: 0318-6615-5294
  • xzzyxzzy Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    All modern operating systems support multiple pointing devices, so what you could do is get a trackball for the left hand, and keep a mouse on the right. Just use whatever's appropriate for the task.

    xzzy on
  • Radioactive HamsterRadioactive Hamster Registered User
    edited March 2009
    I developed rather severe RSI a few years ago, it got to the point where I actually had to wear wrist braces for over a year straight. But fortunately I work for a technology recycling company and as such got access to any choice of keyboards and mice that came in and could purchase them at $5 a pop so I tried the whole gamut available to me. I had the Microsoft Natural 6000 mouse, which actually caused more wrist pain for me. The Evoluent Vertical Mouse 3 actually helped me quite a bit but once I started to heal more I discovered it to wear on my arm at the expense of helping my wrists, also you can't get the accuracy out of it that you can a standard mouse or a trackball. I don't know if you're interested but using ergonomic keyboards helped greatly as well. I had the KeyOvation Goldtouch, the Kinesis Ergo (an old AT model with a PS2 adapter ;)) and the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic 4000. I ended up using the Kinesis and Natural Ergo 4000 the most. Nowadays my desk setup is the Natural Ergo 4000 keyboard and a Logitech G5 mouse, which although it's not billed specifically as ergonomic it's the most comfortable to me. And my Vertical mouse, well it's found a home set up to my HTPC, I've found it's extremely comfortable to use when you're using it on the ground kneeling down next to it in short bursts :).

    Radioactive Hamster on
  • xzzyxzzy Registered User regular
    edited March 2009
    Which is kind of the most important rule.. you have to find something that's most comfortable to you, and there's no hard and fast rule for preserving your wrists.

    Everyone's built slightly differently, and uses their body slightly differently, so we all require slightly different solutions.

    xzzy on
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