If you're a heavy computer user you already face discomfort or pain in the wrist of fingers, you should consider adopting a ergonomic mouse and an ergonomic mouse pad.
Even if you don't feel any discomfort or pain as of now, it always a good idea to take preventive measures.
These minor changes can lead to a huge relief in pain/discomfort and can lead to an increased productivity at work.
In this article, I am going to list some amazing ergonomic mouse pads that you can consider getting.
If you're a complete newbie in the world of ergonomic mouse pad, go through the buyer's guide where I have listed features that you should keep in mind when buying a mouse pad.
What Does Ergonomic Mean?
Anything that is ergonomic is made to be comfortable and efficient in your working environment.
You must have heard of the terms such as ergonomic seats, chairs, or mouse. These indicate that it helps you be extremely comfortable without causing any strain or discomfort to your body.
A lot of awareness is spreading about ergonomics and people are switching to more and more ergonomic products in their workplace.
Benefits of Using an Ergonomic Mouse Pad
An ergonomic mouse pad allows you to rest your wrist on a pad or cushion that helps in preventing problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome. It also helps reduce the pressure on wrist ligaments and tendons.
The function of an ergonomic mouse pad is to minimize wrist and tendon fatigue.
Most of the ergonomic mouse pads come with an elevated section where you can rest your wrist. However, you should NOT rest your wrist on the mouse pad while using the mouse. This should be done only when you are not using the mouse and the hand is stationary or resting.
The function of the elevated section is to let you rest your wrist frequently - thus avoiding exerting pressure to it.
The neutral position of the wrist is not when it's resting on the mouse pad elevated section. The presence of an elevated section (which is often made of gel) reminds you to keep you wrist slightly above it (which is also the neutral position of the wrist).
Best Ergonomic Mouse Pads
Here is a review of five ergonomic mouse pad that you can consider getting. Most of these mouse pads are quite affordable and get the work done.
You can read more about each of these below.
Kensigton is a trusted brand in the home and business office ergonomics. It has over 20 years of experience in making ergonomic products.
The Kensigton ergonomic mouse pad comes with gel pillow that matches the natural curve of wrist and hand. This makes it comfortable while scrolling and clicking.
The gel portion is made of two parts (ventilation channels) that helps keep you hand dry and cool.
The gel elevated section is soft and moulds itself to your wrist shape. However, it doesn't lose it's shape overtime.
It also comes with a durable vinyl rigid base that allows accurate and fast mouse movement.
Some verified users of the mouse have reported a strong plastic smell, however it went away after a wash. You can easily wipe clean this mouse pad with wet cloth to remove any dirt or body oil.
The elevated gel portion is divided into parts that are of different colors. This makes it look more lively. You can choose from 2 colors - red and blue.
TeckNet has a variety of ergonomic products including mouse and mouse pad.
This mouse pad has a gel-filled wrist cushion that is extremely comfortable for heavy duty users and gamers.
It has a silk-processed cloth that ensures minimum friction and smooth movement of the mouse on the pad surface. It also has a rubber foam base that makes sure it doesn't slip when you move the mouse on it.
It has a matte finish which ensures that the mouse doesn't bug out.
The gel wrist support is neither too soft nor too hard. This makes it suitable for people who use it for long hours at a stretch.
Verified users on Amazon have reported that the edges of the mouse pad curl a bit. While this doesn't impact the functioning of the mouse pad, it does make it aesthetically less appealing.
The 3M mouse pad has a wrist rest that is soft enough to provide comfort and firm enough to provide support.
The mouse pad has a texture surface that enhances mouse precision and also leads to some battery saving.
3M claims that this mouse pad can save about 50% battery in a wireless mouse. Some verified users on Amazon have confirmed these claims in their review.
The mouse pad has anti-microbial protection which inhibits growth of bacteria and help enhance the mouse pad life.
The gel-filled wrist rest is leak-proof and puncture resistant.
It has a non-skid base that makes sure the mouse pad remains on its place when you move the mouse on it.
The pad has a texture surface that can accumulate dirt easily. Due to the micro grooves, it's also difficult to clean.
It is also prone to warping in hot and humid environment.
Innovera Gel mouse pads are made of smooth surface that allow frictionless movement of the mouse.
It's ergonomic design provides comfort and is suited for average computer users.
In general, it's bigger in size as compared with most other ergonomic mouse pads.
It has a non-skid back that make sure it doesn't move when you move your wrist and the mouse.
It's stain and water resistant and you can wipe clean it. You can also wash it.
Some verified reviewers on Amazon have reported that that the mouse pad is not soft enough for heavy usage people. After prolonged usage, it starts to seem a bit hard.
One noticeably issue with this ergonomic mouse pad is that it tends to warp in hot and humid environment.
This mouse pad has a gel filled wrist rest that adjusts to your wrist shape and relieves stress.
It has a large area for the mouse usage and has a plastic lining at the edges to prevent the mouse from falling off the pad. The surface is stain and water resistant and can be cleaned easily.
It has an anti-slip back that prevents the mouse from moving when working on it.
A few verified users on Amazon reported that the wrist rest is a bit hard and may not be suitable for people who plan to use it for long hours on a daily basis.
It's edges tend to curl, however, that does not lead to any issue in using the mouse pad.
What to Consider when buying an Ergonomic Mouse Pad?
When it comes to buying an ergonomic mouse pad, there are only a handful of things you need to keep in mind.
Here are the features you should consider:
Wrist Rest for Comfort
Most of the ergonomic mouse pads come with a gel-filled wrist rest. You will not find much difference in the wrist rest of most of the companies.
These wrist rests are soft and are made to allow you to rest your wrist during the moments of inactivity. Make sure that the wrist rest is soft enough to be comfortable, yet firm enough to keep your wrist elevated.
Generally, if you're a moderate user with a few hours a day of usage, a moderately soft wrist rest would be fine for you. But if you're a heavy duty user, you should look for softer ones.
You should always select a mouse pad that has a back made of rubber or non-slippery material.
This is extremely useful as it will make sure your mouse pad stays in it's place when you move the mouse or your hand/wrist.
Ease of Cleaning
No matter how hard you try, dirt and body oil is likely to accumulate on your mouse pad. Make sure you buy a mouse pad that is easy to clean.
You can find many options where you can clean it with a wet cloth or even wash it.
Size of the Mouse Pad
You can find ergonomic mouse pads in different sizes. Personally, I prefer the large ones, but you can choose one based on your liking.
A lot of people prefer regular size mouse pads as the large ones tend to clutter their work space a bit.
Resistant to Warping
Sometimes, mouse pads get a bubble or a warp in the middle that makes it difficult to use it.
While most of the mouse pads are likely to warp in hot and humid conditions, make sure you don't get one with a warp to begin with. If you notice warping in the initial days, consider returning/exchanging the mouse pad (in case you have bought it from places where there is a return guarantee).
This review list some of the most popular ergonomic mouse pads. If you're plagued with carpal tunnel or wrist/hand pain, you must consider buying an ergonomic mouse and an ergonomic mouse pad.