Does Your Mouse Properly Support Your Palm?

palmar support

When you use a computer mouse, the only way to prevent unnecessary tension is by using a mouse that provides proper palmar support. The way to realise this low tension, is with a mouse body that utilises a hand-supporting ball shape as a rest for the hand’s palm.

Palmar Support

The palm is ideal for supporting the hand, due to its strong membrane and the fatty tissue at the bases of our fingers. Naturally though, we need to be able to use the mouse buttons.When you use a conventional, or a vertical mouse, both your fingers and thumb operate the mouse.
This button clicking causes action and reaction forces in your fingers and thumb, introducing significant stresses to your hand muscles. This is a common source of forearm complaints. This theory is supported by anatomical observations and field research.

mouse reaction forces          reaction forces of vertical mouse          palmar support handshoe mouse

Prevent Unneccesary Strains

A mouse body with a fitting contour to support the palm of your hand and fingers can prevent these reaction forces.
The body of the mouse not only supports your hand, but also acts as a counter balance, absorbing the forces and preventing  unnecessary strain to your hand, wrist or fingers.

Your Hand Position On The HandShoe Mouse

handshoe mouse hand support

This article explains why your hand position on a HandShoe Mouse is different from all other mice.
The importance of hand support was also addressed in our article about the “effect of a computer mouse, supporting the hand“.

When you are used to work with a conventional mouse or some sort of non-optimal ergonomic mouse, your muscles may quite often get stressed.
That’s why it may feel a bit strange, when you put your hand on the HandShoe mouse for the first time. Of course you must make sure to use the proper size of HandShoe mouse: small, medium or large.

Relax Hand and Fingers on the HandShoe Mouse

Now you can relax your hand and fingers. You don’t have to hold on to this mouse to be able to use it.
Your hand lies on the mouse in a relaxed fashion. To find the optimal position for your hand and fingers, just place your hand on the HandShoe Mouse.
The middle joint of your thumb will be nicely supported by the thumb support. The soft tissue of the middle joint should rest on the support which feels really comfortable.

Pinky Side of Hand is Supported by a HandShoe Mouse

Next let the ulnar or pinky side of your hand rest on the nicely curved support which runs along the full length of the HandShoe Mouse.
Your hand and fingers are now fully supported from the wrist, up to the tip of your little finger.
Your entire hand is perfectly relaxed, and you will immediately notice the support and comfort your HandShoe Mouse provides!

The Effect of a Computer Mouse Supporting the Hand

hand support

The research which resulted in the HandShoe Mouse design was initiated at Erasmus University MC in Rotterdam, the Netherlands.
Specific complaints were noted with students who used conventional or so-called ergonomic mice. Next to discomfort in hands, arms and shoulders excessive tension in various neck muscles resulted in a restrictive range of motion.

EMG measurements
EMG comparison HandShoe – Conventional Mouse

EMG data from fundamental research at Erasmus University MC showed significant levels of Extensor Muscle activity without moments of rest, with a regular mouse. Forced pronation of the hand and forearm in combination with fingers hovering over the buttons were identified as a source of high EMG signals.
This was contrary to the EMG values when a hand supporting object was used:

A regular mouse is generally too small for the hand resulting in a grip like action of thumb and fingers and thus excessive muscle loads i.e. high EMG values.With a fitting hand supporting mouse there is no need to grip and pinch.

A supporting contour allowed fingers to rest as a stabilized arch in stead of hover (K.J. van Zwieten et al., 2011).

The resulting EMG values showed moments of rest.ergonomic prototype This research proved over exertion of muscles with a “non hand supporting mouse”.

It should be noted that unnecessary and/or excessive muscle loads (muscle tonus) prove to have negative effects on the cellular structures of the human body and thus muscles and nerves, ref. Cinderella Effect (B. Visser and J.H. Van Dieën, 2006).

In general the objective should be to realize a low ratio of EMG value and Minimal Voluntary Contraction (MVC).
As prototype an anatomically derived hand supporting computer mouse was extensively field tested over a period of 1 year (P.C. Helder et al., 2006).

To substantiate the positive results realized by the introduction of a hand supporting computer mouse, an evaluation was performed in cooperation with Maastricht University MC. This entailed a comparison of 8 ergonomic computer mice and a regular mouse with the prototype hand supporting mouse.

Substantiation of findings is corroborated by publications e.g., Hand and Forearm Angle (Han-Ming Chen et al., 2007), Interosseous Membrane (K.J. van Zwieten et al., 2010).