If your work is like mine, which involves moving the computer mouse around a lot, you may prefer to switch to using an ergonomic mouse instead.
Constant sitting for hours on end with only your wrists, fingers, and sometimes your arms moving, can do detrimental damage to you in the long run.
Most ergonomic mice are designed to get your palm and wrist out of the horizontal plane which in turn, reduces the strain on your wrists, shoulders, and elbows by transferring the load onto your mouse and upper arms.
But, with so many designs out there with different looks, features, and with your personal preferences, which one should you go for?
Our Top Picks
Through my research, if you pick one from my shortlisted selection below, you’re unlikely to go wrong.
Here are 7 ergonomic mice that are strongly recommended you use to avoid future long-term pain:
1. Logitech MX Vertical – Wireless Bluetooth
Overall Rating: (4 / 5)
- Ergonomic shape
- Customizable side buttons
- Easy tracking speed changes
- Textured thumb rest
- Not the best for gaming
- Scroll wheel can feel “light”
Leveraging off its development in previous ergonomic mice, the MX Vertical mouse is Logitech’s first attempt at a tall ergonomic mouse that tackles the problems with long-term mouse usage discomforts.
Logitech’s reason is that we aren’t supposed to use the mouse with our hands in the position they normally are – palms facing down and stretched out in front of us.
The MX Vertical mouse addresses that by keeping our hands propped up in a near-vertical 57-degree angle, like in a handshake and claims to be able to reduce muscle strain from extended usage by up to 10%.
Using the mouse in this position gave me a more natural feel while performing simple tasks such as clicking about on web pages and scrolling through my social media feed. While I was editing photos, I felt like I was drawing on a piece of paper on the table when I was holding onto the mouse, which took me a while to get used to it.
It seems like the MX Vertical is best suited for jobs whereby you will spend hours on repetitive tasks and rarely lifting your hands off your desk.
At the size of a tennis ball, this wouldn’t be a mouse that I would recommend bringing about in your bag as part of your laptop setup, although a combination of rubber and aluminum build does give it a nice premium finishing touch and feel. Coupling this with wired or wireless options via Bluetooth, this mouse is the complete package.
2. Logitech MX Master 2 – wireless
Overall Rating: (4 / 5)
- Extremely comfortable
- Tracks on almost any surface
- Pairs with 3 devices with Flow
- Programmable buttons
- Not great for gaming
- Heavier than other options
Logitech unveiled the MX Master back in 2015 which quickly became a favorite because of its ergonomic design and customizability. A few years later, Logitech unveiled the MX Master 2S.
Although both mice seem to be identical in terms of design and button layouts, one of the big changes to the MX Master 2 lies right under the shell. The MX Master 2 sports a Darkfield sensor which tracks up to 4,000 DPI and lets you track on almost any surface. Yes, that means you can use this mouse on glass too.
Another big added feature is the integration of the Logitech Flow software. This software allows you to control up to three computers using a single mouse. All you got to do is install Flow and enable it on your computers then connect them to the same network.
With a big thumb rest and a design that is molded to fit your palm, the MX Master 2 is a very comfortable mouse that you can use through long periods of time. The ergonomics of this mouse aims to keep your wrist in a neutral position and boasts a wireless battery life of 70 days. Plus, an estimated 3-minute charge will also give you a full day’s use.
However, due to its unique design, the MX Master 2 mouse is only suitable for right-handed users and can be bought directly from Logitech.
3. Razer Deathadder Elite – Wired
Overall Rating: (4.3 / 5)
- Solid build
- Nice illumination
- 16000 DPI makes it great for gaming
- Very comfortable
- No onboard memory for switching profiles
- Old design
When Razer first introduced the Deathadder to the gaming industry, it became one of the best gaming mice on the market. Not only because it was beautifully designed, but also because it fitted so well in almost everyone’s palms.
Razer got the design of their first DeathAdder right on the first time and chose not to alter the design aspects on subsequent models, unlike many other manufacturers.
Therefore, the Elite version looks exactly the same and features extremely natural contouring on both sides with the same textured grips for your thumb, pinky and ring finger.
There are a few upgrades to the Elite though, as compared to its predecessor – Located just below the scroll wheel on top of the mouse, there are two additional buttons that are made with subtle profiles. They are useful for key-binds in certain games as you would expect from a gaming mice company. One noticeable change is in the Razer Elite’s scroll wheel. It now has more tactile feedback and is complete with a textured grip surface.
At its low price with great ergonomics for long-term usage or gaming, it’s not only a favorite among gamers but also with digital artists and designers as well. In case you’re wondering what type of sensor a low price like this can bring you – you will get an optical sensor that can deliver up 16,000 DPI and gaming optimized Razer mechanical switches for your clicks!
Built with two rubber sided grips, this iconic ergonomic mouse structure stays incredibly comfortable during long use and is also sworn by top e-sports athletes. This mouse is available direct from Razer.
4. Anker Vertical Ergonomic Optical Mouse – Wireless
Overall Rating: (4.3 / 5)
- VERY affordable
- Auto-idle mode when not in use
- Extreme comfort
- No charging options, only AAA batteries
- Feels a bit plastic-y
- Batteries not included
In the ergonomic mice market, it seems that there are several companies that have popped up offering very affordable ergonomic mice in a market that has a relatively high price point, which is pretty good for people like me, I’m totally their target market.
But this is probably one of the weirdest looking and most unheard brands of computer mice I have ever seen. But if you get the chance to lay your hands on it, you will be surprised to find that it feels pretty darn good in your hand.
Priced below $30, it is one of the cheapest options for an ergonomic mouse that I could find out there. Its sensor is capable of up to 1600 DPI and its ergonomically designed thumb rests, grips fit into the contour of my palm comfortably.
Gripping and moving the mouse is fine but using the scroll wheel felt a little awkward to me. I’m not sure if it’s because of the size of my hands, but the scroll wheel seems to be positioned a little too far back into my palm and I had to contort my middle finger backward to access it.
The difference between grips is obvious once I transfer my hand back to my normal, conventional mouse which suddenly feels a lot harder and more tiring to use now.
The Anker also gives you five buttons for improved control over your computer’s systems. Whether dragging and dropping, selecting large volumes of data in Excel, or casual gaming, this mouse provides a low-cost, effective solution for multiple computing needs and you can buy it directly from Anker.
5. Evoluent VM4R Vertical Mouse – Wireless
Overall Rating: (4.3 / 5)
- Fantastic ergonomics
- High build quality
- 2600 DPI adjustable sensor
- 5 easy access buttons
- Takes time to get used to
Mouse designs have evolved ever since they surfaced on Earth. Inexpensive models are designed with some comfort in mind and the expensive ones will fit your hand like a glove.
But if you’re looking for a build that was designed to use while recovering or preventing repetitive stress injuries, the Evoluent VM4R Vertical Mouse might be a strong option for you.
Overall, this mouse looks like a dolphin’s dorsal fin protruding out when placed on my desk. Its body tapers down towards a flared base at the bottom which allows me to keep my wrist more aligned with my forearm. The flared base also keeps my pinky and palm from dragging on the mouse pad.
This mouse places my hand and wrist at a 90-degree angle to a normal mouse which essentially raises my wrist off the mouse pad. Being in this position relieves fatigue and definitely reduces the risk of developing Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.
The mouse is divided into two main elements where the buttons and wheels are located on the right side of the device and a rounded indentation on the left side for your thumb to rest on.
The mouse is made with plastic all over with a glossy surface on the thumb side. Underneath are three gliding pads and a slot for an AA battery. Blue LEDs light up at the top edge of the mouse as the DPI indicator.
You can also tell that the mouse is powered on when an LED logo near your fingers lights up. Priced below $100, you can have one shipped to you from Amazon.
6. Corsair Dark Core RGB – Wired/Wireless
- Excellent sensor – 16000 DPI
- Qi Wireless Charging
- Highly resposive
- Comfortable to hold
- Complicated software
- Heavier than average
When it comes to Corsair products, people automatically associate this brand to gaming. Although this mouse was originally designed for gamers, the features this mouse can provide attracted users who are looking for customizable ergonomic options as well.
Apart from sporting a 16,000 DPI sensor and enough buttons to serve both my first-person shooter and role-playing strategic games, this mouse also includes interchangeable magnetic attachments that I could adjust to my grip style.
But I can see that this feature will only be of use to some as it really boils down to your mouse grip type. Once you have decided on a piece that’s right for you, you will most likely stick to it and it’s unlikely you will swap it out.
I was using this mouse for about 4 hours and I got to say, the rubber material covering most of the Dark Core makes it very nice to grip on. If you use a palm grip whereby your palm touches the mouse while using, the bumpy texture will keep your hand from slipping to a minimum without the rough sandpapery feel.
The Corsair Dark Core RGB comes with an RF dongle with super low latency apart from the standard Bluetooth. You can also plug this mouse in for a direct USB connection for charging and use at the same time.
The battery life of the mouse isn’t really that good if you compare it to a normal wireless mouse. Although the Dark Core boasts that it can provide up to 24 hours of gaming on a single charge, I was only able to use the mouse for about 5 hours in a day and in about four and a half days, I had to plug it in.
For gamers who are looking for an extra oomph in their setup, this mouse will let you customize the buttons’ programming, which are then saved directly onto the mouse’s internal memory system and can be paired with your gaming profiles or PCs.
7. Logitech MX ERGO – Wireless
- Relaxed grip
- Lots of buttons
- Fantastic battery life
- Receiver and bluetooth support
- No left-handed option
If you’re a fan of trackball mice, this type of mouse will be old news for you. However, if you’re unaware or have never tried a mouse like this before, this will be a big deal for you.
Transitioning from a normal mouse to a trackball will mean changing your behavior and mouse habits that you’re used to. The index and middle fingers move the mouse while your thumb and ring finger performs the clicks.
What Logitech cleverly did was to design a mouse that uses a trackball but for people who uses normal mice and at the same time, reduce wrist strain. Lo and behold, the Logitech MX Ergo was born.
When comparing this model to the trackballs of the past, the MX Ergo has a very nice design with a grey color scheme. The design of the body has a wider footprint which translates into a more comfortable grip. Instead of moving the MX Ergo around like a mouse, it remains stationary and you roll the ball around with your thumb. Logitech says that this results in 20% less muscle strain than a conventional mouse.
When tilted at 30 degrees with an included weighted tilt-able adjustable base, the mouse body allows you to reduce the movement of the tendons that pass through your carpal tunnel which leaves you in a natural position like a handshake, which reduces further strain on your wrist.
While I tried performing repetitive tasks all day with this mouse, I couldn’t do them as quickly as I normally would as I was not used to the trackball. There is also an easy switch button where you can switch between two computers and customize the buttons with the Logitech’s Flow software.
Laser or optical sensors? Higher DPI? These are two of the most common questions that are asked when buying a mouse. Computer mice perform their tracking in DPI or “dots per inch”. An optical sensor in a mouse can track between 400 DPI and up to 800 DPI, some newer optical sensors are able to track even more.
A laser mouse, on the other hand, can track more than 2,000 DPI. Unless you require such precise tracking like a gamer or a graphic designer, you wouldn’t need such high numbers and would get by just fine with an optical sensor.
In general, the higher the DPI, the more sensitive the mouse is to your movements which could get very annoying at times.
Ergonomic Mouse Buying Guide
A repetitive strain injury is one of the most common ailments that affect office workers and of all body parts, the wrists and hands are commonly affected areas.
Just like the keyboard, the mouse is an indispensable part of the office workstation. The touchpad that comes with your laptop may be acceptable for casual web surfing, but for real work that takes hours of typing and clicking, the mouse is a necessity.
It makes sense that having an ergonomic mouse would complete your healthy and ergonomic workstation.
This guide aims to take you through some of the features of ergonomic mice and help you narrow down the kind of mouse that is most suitable for your needs.
Standard horizontal (traditional) mouse
This is your standard two-button mouse that may or may not come with a scroll in between. It lies flat on the desk and depending on the height of the mouse, you may have to cock your wrist at an awkward angle to use it.
It may be fine to use this kind of mouse for short periods of time, but after long term use and many continuous hours spent clicking away, you may start to feel the strain on your wrists and forearms. All-in-all it is not very ergonomic.
This futuristic-looking gadget may not look like your standard mouse, but it is a mouse nevertheless. To use these funky looking mice, you need to position your hands in a way that is more ergonomically healthy for your wrists, often in a more vertical or sideways position.
There is a learning curve involved, especially if you have been using traditional mice all your life, but it is well worth the effort.
Also, compared to the traditional mouse, you have to use the stronger muscles of your arms to move this mouse. If you already have repetitive strain injury like carpal tunnel syndrome, using this type of mouse may have you breathing a sigh of relief, as it allows you to rest the injured muscle groups.
One vertical mouse favorite that we love is the Anker Vertical Ergonomic Mouse, reviewed here.
The trackball mouse is quite simply a mouse with a moveable trackball on it. To move your cursor, just move the trackball instead of the mouse. As a result, moving the cursor around requires a lot less effort than the traditional mouse, giving your wrists a much-needed break.
This is also a great option if you have a lack of space on your desk, or if the surface you work on is uneven.
On the other hand, if you are a gamer, this kind of mouse may not be the best choice as you would struggle with speed and precision.
Just like the vertical mouse, there is a learning curve. It takes time to get used to the trackball mouse but once again, we feel the time spent learning how to use a trackball mouse may be worth the trouble, especially if you already have wrist pain.
Ergonomic horizontal mouse
If the vertical mouse is too big of a jump for you, consider an upgrade to a more ergonomic version of the typical horizontal mouse. This type of mouse usually has minor tweaks made to the traditional model to make it kinder to your wrists and more comfortable to use.
For example, like the Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Mouse, it can be adjusted to an angle to remove some pressure off your wrists.
Another great example of the ergonomic horizontal mouse is the Razer Deathadder Elite wired mouse reviewed in detail here. It looks like your conventional mouse from a distance, but its rubber sided grips with textured indentations for the thumb, pinky and ring fingers make it more ergonomic than a traditional mouse.
Apart from that, this type of mouse also typically comes with more features than the conventional mouse that usually has two clicks and scroll. They are designed in such a way that you should be able to spend hours working with the mouse with no pain or discomfort to your hands and wrists.
9 important ergonomic mouse factors
Now that we have briefly explored the different categories of mice, let’s get to the crucial part – the features to consider when looking for a new mouse.
1. Overall Ergonomics
This is the key factor separating an ergonomic mouse from a conventional mouse – the design. Look for a mouse that sits well in your hand, supports your thumb and wrists, and has a comfortable feel even after hours of use.
Not everyone will feel comfortable using a vertical mouse or a trackball mouse, and the same can be said for a more simple horizontal mouse. The key is to find one that you find comfortable and that you won’t mind using for hours on end.
2. Dots per Inch or DPI
This is a common specification you will come across when shopping for mice. DPI literally refers to the number of dots/pixels the cursor on the screen moves when you move the mouse an inch. It is a reflection of how sensitive the mouse is.
For example, if the mouse has 1600 DPI, when you move the mouse 1 inch, the cursor theoretically moves across 1600 pixels on the screen. A lower DPI may give you faster reaction time, but a higher DPI may give you better precision. The best DPI depends on your needs, a graphic designer may enjoy a higher DPI, but for more usual activities such as checking emails, it can be annoying to have your cursor move across the screen too much.
Many people, even gamers, are of the opinion that DPI does not really matter. But that said, it still matters to some. If DPI is truly important to your needs, we suggest getting a mouse with an adjustable DPI setting. This way you can choose the best mouse sensitivity for the specific activity that you are doing.
This may sound obvious, but it is worth emphasizing. When it comes to computer mice, size matters.
If you have small hands, you may want to stay clear of the larger sized trackball mice. Using a mouse that is too large for you will cause you to stretch out your fingers. It will also take more effort to click. Similarly, if you have large hands, a very small mouse may not be comfortable to use as you would have to claw your hands over it.
With a correctly sized mouse, the tips of your fingers should just about reach the edge of your mouse when your palm is relaxed on the mouse. The sense of movement when moving the mouse should not be limited to your wrists. To encourage a more equal distribution of pressure, try to move the mouse using your forearms and arms as well.
In the past, your average mouse only had buttons for you to left click, right click and that’s it!
Thankfully, those days are gone, and now we have mice with lots of buttons and lots of options. Having a choice of different buttons to carry out various functions will make your work life a lot easier – especially if these buttons are programmable.
Whether you are a gamer or just using a mouse for work, having certain “hot-keys” at your fingertips can save to time, effort, and remove excessive movements that may be causing you long-term pain.
5. Purpose of the mouse
When looking for a suitable mouse, always take into account your own activity levels.
If you are a gamer, there is a whole market of mice specifically for gamers that should accommodate all budgets, from the limited to the more flexible. There is almost no reason for an avid gamer to risk wrist pain from using a regular mouse.
Similarly, if you use the mouse casually for a few hours a day at the most, perhaps a high-end mouse is not a necessary investment.
You may still want to slightly upgrade your current traditional mouse into a more ergonomic model. However, for the regular office worker who uses the mouse at least 40 hours a week, we suggest a vertical mouse or at the very least, a decent horizontal ergonomic mouse.
Wireless mice are becoming more common these days – I use one myself! The convenience is unmatched. Wireless mice usually use Bluetooth, infrared or radio frequency technology to remain connected with your laptop, and having one less clunky cable cluttering up the desk makes a big difference.
The lack of wires also means you can place your mouse wherever it is comfortable for you. If you have a multi-tier desk, you even may find that the mouse feels easier to use when placed on the lower shelf.
You can easily take a step back from the monitor every now and then to ease your eyes and still keep working as long as you have a surface to place your mouse on.
The downside is in the charging. Some mice will require replaceable batteries, whereas others may come with a charger, but in both cases, you’ll need to make sure you have sufficient charge to use the mouse. A wired mouse, on the other hand, is always ready to go!
Being left-handed in a right-handed world is not always easy.
From table settings to scissors, you may have experienced trouble using ‘regular’ items. Well, thankfully you won’t have to struggle with the computer mouse.
There are specific mice made for left-handed people, and if you are a leftie, we strongly suggest you pick one up. The difference in comfort and usability is well worth it!
If you are lucky enough to be ambidextrous, there are also mice made specifically for ambidextrous people, allowing you to alternate easily between your left and right hand.
8. Battery life
There are few things more annoying than running out of battery in the middle of a busy workday. A battery life of a few months with normal use is typical of a good quality ergonomic mouse.
Check if the mouse you are interested in has a ‘sleep’ function to let the mouse conserve battery after a period of inactivity. Another factor to consider would be whether the mouse is recharged via a connection to the mains, or if you need to add replaceable batteries to power it up.
Replaceable batteries are less environmentally friendly as they are often disposable, but if you run out battery life in an urgent situation, it is much easier to pop new ones in than to go looking for a charger. If the mouse needs replaceable batteries, find out if the batteries are included with the purchase.
Of course, we may want to own the very best model for every office furniture item, but the cost is a necessary consideration for most of us.
While a computer mouse may not be at the top of your priority list, a cheap but uncomfortable mouse isn’t worth sacrificing your wrist health for.
Ergonomic mice do not have to be expensive. Even a budget-friendly option with a few ergonomic tweaks like textured indentations can be a good buy.
Ergonomic mice are designed with the user in mind. Most products and designs have changed over the years to ensure that there is improved efficiency and comfort as you use the product. Each mouse shape and design provide a form of relaxation to your wrist by ensuring the strain is transferred from the wrist to the mouse and upper arm muscles.
Although these improvements may have made the mouse look odd, these designs bring about a practical benefit and you do not have to worry about long-term damage to your wrists, tendons and future illness such as arthritis.
But before you embark on your journey of getting a new mouse, remember to choose a mouse that suits your needs as well. If you’re a gamer, you will need a higher quality sensor which improves the mouse movement accuracy. You may also need lots of additional customizable buttons – for all those quick weapon switches and maybe perhaps some complex macros for those quick spell casts?