Since my late teens I’ve had issues with wrist pain. I blame it on bad cycling position (riding with my wrists bent down) and other types of manual labour (8 hours of shovelling for a summer anyone?). Yes there is surgery but I’ve found that I can manage it with the tips below.
I type all day most days of the week. A good keyboard is essential to keeping my wrists healthy. Currently I’m using the Kinesis Freestyle Solo and you can read my review of it if you’d like. The split keyboard lets me keep my wrists hands and shoulders in a comfortable position all day.
Second up is the layout I use for typing Dvorak. Normal keyboards are QWERTY and the real short version is the Dvorak is typically faster and it’s easier on your hands. You can read the long post about the Dvorak change. The short version is that I type faster with better accuracy and my hands/wrists don’t get tired.
Yes we’d all like to just sit and code all day, but it’s just not healthy in any way. Sure a standing desk may help reduce the issues with sitting all day, but if you read around you’ll find bad things about them as well. In steps Pomodoro.
In real basic terms you work for 25 minutes and focus on what you’re doing, do distractions allowed. Then you get a 5 minute break where you get up and walk around or rest. The official point is to have a fresh mind when you get back in 5 minutes.
I use the 5 minute breaks to walk to the front of my house and look out the window. Reduces the periods that I sit effectively. The best book I’ve read on Poromodo is Pomodoro Technique Illustrated.
Up finally is the tools I use. I’ve spoken about my ergonomic keyboard already but did I mention I’m left handed? That means I use my mouse with my right and have a Wacom tablet on my left. I end up using the tablet for Photoshop and Screenflow mostly which helps spread out any repetitive motions between hands.
I also use Alfred.app to open programs, move files, search stuff. MacVim is my code editor of choice and I use Vimium in Chrome. All of these things combine to mean I rarely have to reach for my mouse. I use it little enough that I was out of batteries for a week and it was only minority annoying, not even annoying enough to go back to my kitchen and get the batteries.
Hopefully you got a few tips on making sure that your wrists and hands stay healthy for the long haul.