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I have read in some places that mechanical keyboards alleviate the pain of RSI (vs. regular keyboards).

E.g.:

http://techshift.net/5-reasons-why-you-should-buy-a-mechanical-keyboard/

5 reasons why you should buy a mechanical keyboard

[...]

The third benefit is reduced strain. I realize this is closely related to comfort but I felt that this deserved its own section simply because of RSI(Repetitive Strain Injury). We use our computers for hours and some of us do not take RSI seriously. I take good care of my hands. And so should you. For most people, their hands are their livelihood. Hand health is very important if you are a musician, laborer, or athlete. One thing I’ve notice after spending a few months with my mechanical keyboard compared to keyboards of my past is finger pain. I use to get finger pain after prolonged typing on the rubber dome keys. They were all I knew so I didn’t question. It wasn’t until I was in the market for a better keyboard where I found out about mechanical key switches. Subsequently, it wasn’t until I was typing on them for hours until I realized my finger pain was mainly caused by the cheap rubber-dome keyboards. If you are on the computer for hours, or if your profession involves extensive amounts of typing, consider investing on a mechanical keyboard for this very reason. These key switches will reduce finger strain. Your hands will thank you.

How true is that?

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Most searches I conducted for this lead to unreferenced opinion pieces or articles on sites selling mechanical keyboards.

However, I found an experimental study conducted in the Philippines in 2022 with 64 participants that analysed differences in pain level (reported by the participant), typing speed and accuracy between four types of keyboards (standard, laptop, mechanical and foldable).

This chart summarises the findings. Participants reported lower pain levels with the mechanical keyboard compared to the others.

Chart showing results of keyboard study


Caveat: They do not report in their methodology if participants were assigned a keyboard randomly. Also, this study covered a relatively short time period and might not be generalisable to longer periods of time or prevention of repetitive strain injury. Also, this study assessed pain scores and not diagnosis of repetitive strain or carpal tunnel syndrome.

However, it does seem to fit with much anecdotal evidence.

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