Pros and Cons of Left Handed Keyboard You Should Know
A left-handed keyboard, as the name suggests, is a keyboard specially made for left-handed people. The main difference it has to a regular keyboard is that the numeric keypad is placed on the left side of the keyboard instead of the right area, making it more convenient and ergonomic for specific users.
Whether you’re looking for an ergonomic gaming keyboard or are trying to make the most of a full-size keyboard layout, it’s always recommendable to take into account your dominant hand for more convenience. That’s why, today, we’ll be describing what left-handed computer keyboards are and who can benefit from them.
Who Can Take Advantage of a Left-Handed Keyboard?
As obvious as it may sound, left-handed keyboards are primarily suitable for left-handed people. It can be pretty comfortable for a right-handed person to use these devices, the same problem that left-handed people live with while using a regular keyboard.
However, that doesn't mean that right-handed people can't use these keyboards. If a person struggles with right shoulder or arm pain or perhaps has an injury that prevents them from using their right arm correctly, a left-handed keyboard can also be beneficial as it reduces the need to overreach such an area whenever they use the mouse for instance.
Still, keep in mind that this is one of the many computer accessories directed toward left-handed users. It can help people prevent repetitive strain injuries (RSI) and several other disorders due to the huge ergonomic improvement they add to the overall workstation.
Left-Handed Computer Keyboard: Importance of Ergonomics
"Ergonomics" is a discipline that is all about how you and all the objects in your environment interact. A room has good ergonomics when you can comfortably use all of the intended accessories – including peripherals –without necessarily making an extra effort.
How can a left-handed keyboard benefit you?
This way, a left-handed keyboard can help a left-handed person use their dominant hand more often, and, therefore, they can improve their efficiency and productivity. Furthermore, there will be less risk of injury as the keyboard will reduce the need to bend your hand to reach out to the keypad.
How can a left-handed keyboard be disadvantageous?
It can take a while for you to get used to the new layout, as your hands are already used to the regular keyboard. Hence, you may end up feeling stressed during the first few days, but after a while, this discomfort should disappear, and you should be able to improve your typing speed.
You Can Try Different Types of Keyboards, Too!
The traditional combination of computer keyboard and mouse has been evolving a lot. There are new models available for casual users, office workers, and even games. Hence, if you want to improve the ergonomic feel of your workstation, we also recommend you consider using a different type of keyboard. Below we describe some of the most common types, along with their benefits.
Most keyboards use rubber membrane keys to work, which require some effort to be able to type efficiently. However, a mechanical keyboard reduces this as mechanical switches replace the membrane system. These keys have improved feedback and are less exhaustive because you don’t have to apply too much pressure to the key to get the letters or commands right.
If you’re a gamer, we highly recommend switching to a left-handed mechanical keyboard. Most ergonomic gaming keyboards are mechanical, after all. It can help you improve your skill and reduce your fatigue. Some of these devices are also categorized as carpal tunnel keyboards.
Split Mechanical Keyboards
Split mechanical keyboards are another excellent option for multiple reasons. This unique keyboard layout allows you to place your hands in a more comfortable position, regardless of where each one is located. This way, you can improve the ergonomic feel in your workstation and make it less likely for you to struggle with RSI in the future.
It's also possible to find a split or wireless left-handed keyboard for gaming with mechanical switches. It’s all a matter of exploring different options until you find the one that suits you best.
Some keyboards lack a keypad, or if you would like an ergonomic TKL keyboard (for instance), you can also consider getting a separate keypad. This way, you can easily place it anywhere you find convenient so that you can have access to it at any time. For instance, placing it around the center area of the keyboard seems to work best for most people.
What Else Should You Consider?
If you’re a left-handed person and would like to improve your workstation to make it more ergonomic, there are a few things you should do. Since we’re talking about keyboards, the following advice can help you improve the overall feel of your main work area:
- You can consider adding a wrist pad to both your mouse and keyboard. Some ergonomic keyboards already have one, but if yours doesn’t, you can purchase it for a very affordable price.
- Use an ergonomic chair. Ergonomic chairs can help you position yourself correctly to prevent stress, pain, and potential injuries. These benefits also apply to your hands while working. Therefore, it's always recommendable to invest in a good ergonomic chair.
- Remember to take breaks now and then. It's easy to get carried away while working and forget that our bodies have limits, too. Hence, whenever possible, take a break and let your hands relax for a little while before you continue working.
The Bottom Line
Left-handed keyboards are an excellent option for determined users. It can help them improve their workstation and improve their efficiency and productivity. Although it’s a small change, it can be meaningful as you’ll start using your hands as you should.
Whether you’d like an ergonomic keyboard or a gaming keyboard, it is important to explore your options and make sure that the keyboard you're using is suitable for you. After all, you'll use this keyboard for prolonged periods. It should at least allow you to type comfortably without any complications.
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