What is the Best Typing Posture?

Marisa O'Connor

The best typing posture is demonstrated as sitting up straight at a desk with relaxed shoulders and feet flat on the floor. It is important to implement correct posture, especially for those who spend hours typing on a daily basis. Doing so can prevent repetitive stress injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome.

Poor or restricted posture can put undue strain on a person's neck.
Poor or restricted posture can put undue strain on a person's neck.

Correct typing posture requires a quality, adjustable chair. The chair should provide lumbar support. The back support ought to be shaped in a way that allows for normal spine curvature while in the sitting position. The height of the chair is adjustable so that feet may rest flat on the floor or a foot rest. Less pressure is placed on the spine when feet are flat on the floor.

Maintaining good typing posture can help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome.
Maintaining good typing posture can help prevent carpal tunnel syndrome.

Some people find a slightly reclined position, which is easier on the back, to be the best typing posture. It is important to keep in mind that this position can add stress to the neck and shoulders if more reaching is necessary. Whether or not arm rests are used, the arms should remain at the typist's sides. The chair should also be on wheels for easy movement.

The position of a computer is important for one's posture, as poor posture can increase one's chances of developing carpel tunnel.
The position of a computer is important for one's posture, as poor posture can increase one's chances of developing carpel tunnel.

The keyboard and tray should be adjusted to a height that is comfortable. Elbows may be bent no more than 90 degrees and remain close to the body for the best typing posture. Typing ergonomics, which uses science to determine the safest and most productive typing posture, states that wrists should remain flat while typing and using a mouse or track pad. While typing, it is best to keep wrists hovering above the keyboard, only resting them when typing has stopped. This will prevent nerve compression and allow for proper blood flow to the wrists, hands, and fingers.

A wrist brace may be worn to alleviate the pain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome.
A wrist brace may be worn to alleviate the pain associated with carpal tunnel syndrome.

Pads are available to help keep wrists elevated. Many arm rests can also be adjusted to a position that supports straight wrists. Another option is to tilt the keyboard slightly to a position where it is comfortable to type and keep one's wrists straight.

The position of the computer is also a key aspect of the best typing posture. The computer monitor should be at arms' length, approximately 12 to 30 inches (about 30 to 76 cm) from the typist. Keeping a proper distance will prevent back and neck strain, which is caused by leaning forward. It is also important to raise the computer monitor so that the top of the screen is even with the eyes.

Maintaining correct typing posture will keep the typist comfortable, injury-free, and may even help productivity. When muscles are strained, it drains energy and focus from the task at hand. Posture also affects energy by promoting blood circulation.

A desk chair should be shaped in a way that allows for normal spine curvature while in the sitting position.
A desk chair should be shaped in a way that allows for normal spine curvature while in the sitting position.

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