Let’s go back in time to when the first computers were created. Computers then were huge and were only used on an industrial scale. How they looked were clearly different compared to the ones we use now for our daily work.
Technology had to evolve to adapt to our needs
Almost all the components of the computer have undergone radical changes over time. But for some reason, the keyboard has remained the same. It's interesting that after 30 years of personal computers, the keyboard’s design is still based on the same design of 19th-century typewriters.
If we look at a tennis racket, a soccer ball, or even the uniforms of athletes, they have undergone changes to improve the performance of the players.
In order to be more efficient and comfortable for the players, not only did the materials change but also its design.
Why hasn’t the keyboard done the same?
Essential facts about the computer and video game industry
Nowadays, having a personal computer in your home is a standard custom. Ninety-seven percent of households in the US own personal computers, with sixty-seven percent owning a device that is used for video games. This is a notable percentage that shouldn’t be taken for granted. After all, its effects are evident in today’s society.
Age breakdown of video game players in the United States in 2018
More than 50% of the gamer population in the United States are young people under the age of 35, half of which are under 18 years old.
Out of all the activities that involve the computer, gaming is the one that needs the most physical effort.
It is not surprising to hear people complain about back problems after sitting in front of the computer for long periods of time. However, your back is not the only thing that suffers.
Back pain related to the constant use of a traditional keyboard
Back pain is only the beginning.
Your wrists and shoulders also undergo physical stress because of the constant and repetitive movements of the same muscles over and over again.
This can lead to Repetitive Strain Injury, which describes the pain felt in muscles, nerves, and tendons caused by repetitive movement and overuse¹. If left untreated, this can worsen and result in Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS).
Although getting CTS is an extreme case, it isn’t the only problem. Poor positioning of your wrist can affect the entire forearm. In effect, this can bring pain to your upper arm, then to your upper body, neck, and even the cranial muscles around your head². This can cause neck and shoulder aches as well as headaches. If you’re hunched all day typing or playing on your computer, symptoms will only worsen.
Scars for Surgical Intervention of the Carpal Tunnel
Traditional keyboards were not designed for gaming. During all the years that they have been in the market, they have neither evolved nor have significantly adapted to the needs of gamers.
There is no doubt that esports already has a significant place in the world of sporting events. It is an industry that boasts its substantial economic gains, and its large fan base: spectators, enthusiasts, and high impact players.
So why hasn’t there been any rectification on this issue?
Compact, divided, curved and even vertical keyboards have tried to make a place in the industry to solve the current problems of the keyboard. Some have convinced consumers that they are the solution to their health problems. But do they actually work?
Many experts believe that ergonomic keyboards can change both your performance on the computer and the impact it makes on your body.
Dr. John Ridd, ergonomics specialist at the Charter Institute of Ergonomics and Human Factors in the United Kingdom commented:
"Some people are likely to benefit," "But that depends on the type of ergonomic keyboard you are prescribed and the type of problem you have individually"
Gamers, programmers, and all types of users have shown their confidence in the new proposals of ergonomic keyboards on the market.
According to a report from Future Market Insight entitled "Computer Keyboard Market - Global Industry Analysis and Opportunity Assessment 2015 - 2025", the global demand for keyboards is valued at 4.700 million dollars, and expects to undergo a change of 3% in the coming years.
All this is due to the presence of ergonomic keyboards.
What is the solution?
It is not only about acquiring an ergonomic keyboard but more importantly, to find the one that best suits the needs of each and every user.
Dygma's proposal seeks to create a keyboard that can reduce stress on your back, shoulders, and wrists, while also increase your performance.
This goal is manifested in the Raise keyboard, a product that covers the greatest number of needs with its numerous customizable features.
Its split ergonomic feature allows users to adjust the space between the 2 halves of the keyboard according to the length of their shoulders. This also allows users to freely position their keyboards however they feel most comfortable.
This not only brings more comfort to users but also avoids positioning their hands in bad angles, thus preventing strain over time.
If users do not want to use a split keyboard, they connect both halves easily and securely. The freedom is theirs.
Another feature the Raise offers is the palm pads that enable the wrists to work at a neutral angle. This is one solution that reduces stress on the joints in the wrists.
Dygma continues to find ways to improve the functionality of the keyboard. With the constant support of gamers and coders worldwide, the Raise is becoming the stepping stone into creating more and better ergonomic keyboards that fit the needs of all its users.
Who knows? Maybe one day the traditional keyboard will completely die out and evolve into a hybrid that can finally adapt to all of our needs. Now that we are aware of the risks, we can find the solution or generate many solutions. The possibilities are endless.
¹ - https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/repetitive-strain-injury-rsi/
² - https://www.goldtouch.com/flat-keyboard-dangers/