Home » How Do I Choose a Keyboard Tray? Helpful Tips for Improving Your Work Environment

How Do I Choose a Keyboard Tray? Helpful Tips for Improving Your Work Environment

When it comes to keyboard trays, it’s essential to find one that allows for correct ergonomics. According to CNN, about 43% of Americans sit at a computer between one or two hours a day, while 25% use a computer for three to four hours a day.

If you are positioned incorrectly while typing, it can lead to many issues like wrist, shoulder, back, and neck problems. For the most part, when a keyboard is set on top of a desk, it’s too far away, and wrists are positioned too high, leading to issues like carpal tunnel or tendonitis.

Before purchasing a keyboard tray, it’s essential to evaluate your desk and chair situation. If you determine that your desk is too high to place your keyboard on for comfortable typing and your chair doesn’t elevate enough to suit, a keyboard tray might be an inexpensive way to fix these problems.

The correct posture for typing is with your feet flat on the ground, back straight, and elbow bent at 90 degrees. In this position, your wrist should be straight and not flexed, allowing your fingers to rest directly on the keys. This position prevents the hunching of the shoulders, which leads to back and neck problems.

It also prevents incorrect wrist alignment, which often leads to tendonitis in the wrist or carpal tunnel syndrome. Some keyboard trays provide a negative tilt to align wrists properly. It involves positioning the computer at a slant with the top of the keyboard pointed down towards the floor.

What Is An Adjustable Keyboard Tray?

An adjustable keyboard tray allows you the flexibility to maneuver the keyboard until it fits your specific needs. Whether the keyboard is wall-mounted, connected to a chair, or mounted under the desk, it has different adjustments to reach the correct height and wrist alignment when seated.

One of the best examples of an excellent adjustable keyboard tray is the 3M. The height of this under the desk keyboard tray adjusts between 4.5 and 6 inches and features a tilt of 10 degrees to 15 degrees. It also features a gel wrist rest to ensure proper wrist alignment while typing.

Adjustable keyboard trays are available in a standing version for people who prefer standing to sitting while typing. An adjustable keyboard for standing users must be compatible with your desk.

Also, a mouse tray allows you to maneuver the mouse without reaching to the side. Too much shoulder movement can result in shoulder issues. To discover more about adjustable keyboard types, check out our Geeqer article on the different adjustable keyboard tray types.

What Is An Articulating Keyboard Tray?

An articulating keyboard tray features an arm that makes the tray more adjustable. It adds versatility to the keyboard as it can be moved to different heights and angles to ensure correct ergonomic placement.

This feature is excellent, especially if you need to move the keyboard to look at an additional monitor on your desk. Instead of only sliding in and out from under the desk, the articulating functionality allows different angle placement, ideal for particular desks or standing ergonomic keyboard trays.

How Do I Adjust My Keyboard Tray?

Adjustment of a keyboard tray will depend on what keyboard tray you choose. For an under desk keyboard tray, you’ll need to take the proper measurements for knee clearance under the tray.

Most under desk keyboard trays can slide under the desk when not in use. A sliding keyboard tray comes with rails on each side to make them easy to slide.

Also, most keyboard trays can be lifted and lowered to different heights by grabbing underneath the tray and gently lifting it up or down. Certain under the desk keyboard trays feature a button underneath that you can push to change the angle of the ergonomic keyboard tray. Most keyboard trays are easy to install and provide step-by-step guidelines on adjusting for height and angles.

Is a Keyboard Tray Worth It?

Ergonomic keyboard trays are popular for various reasons. It can be adjusted to the correct height and angle to ensure proper posture and wrist placement. An under desk keyboard tray often features a mouse tray to ensure you aren’t reaching too far when using the mouse. These features help prevent carpal tunnel, tendonitis, neck, shoulder, and back issues.

Another reason a keyboard tray is worth it is it eliminates the need to use desk space for your keyboard. Sliding a keyboard and mouse tray underneath your desk means you have room on your desk for other essential items, especially if you are working in a cramped work environment.

We discussed how much we sit and for some people, sitting down at a computer desk all day is not feasible. Ergonomic keyboard trays allow people to use a standing desk and manipulate into their comfort zone for both height and angle. A standing keyboard tray with a mouse platform might cure people from specific back issues they experience after sitting for too long.

Also Read : Best Redragon Keyboard

Are Keyboard Trays Good For Posture?

Keyboard trays are suitable for posture because they provide the right height and angle, ensuring you are sitting properly when using your computer. Most desks are too high for typing. When a keyboard is placed on a too-high desk, it causes improper posture and a bent wrist. Both of those can lead to chronic problems down the road.

Many keyboard trays allow for the negative tilt, which gives a person the optimal wrist placement when typing. Both the keyboard and the mouse platform are at the right angle with a negative tilt.

Because keyboard trays are set up while seated in the proper position, it forces you to have good posture. Once you realize how much the keyboard tray benefits your overall health, sitting correctly is a no-brainer.

Ergonomic Keyboard Tray

We discussed ergonomics, but an actual ergonomic keyboard tray ensures two vital things when typing. The first thing it fixes is your desk’s height issue. Most desks are either too high or too low for typing. This position puts a strain on your body and causes pressure on muscles that shouldn’t engage during typing.

The other thing an ergonomic keyboard tray fixes is tilt for your wrists. A negative tilt of 15 degrees is ideal for a desk keyboard drawer and 30 degrees for a standing desk. This keyboard platform ensures that your wrist isn’t bending and is straight while typing. A consistently bent wrist leads to carpal tunnel syndrome.

Final Thoughts

The suitable ergonomic keyboard tray will ensure you aren’t dealing with health problems in the long term from sitting at your desk all day. If we are forced to sit at a computer for most of the day, we must make it as comfortable as possible. A simple keyboard tray with a separate mouse tray might differentiate between back pain or a pain-free environment.