Whether you spend long hours sitting at a computer each day or you only sit down to check your emails intermittently, the likelihood of developing joint discomfort, carpal tunnel, and other wrist-related disorders increases with every minute spent at a computer desk. Finding the best ergonomic mouse for your personal setup will mitigate the common causes of these problems by allowing your wrist and hand to maintain a more natural position while working to decrease tension in the tendons and nerve pathways of the area. Because all activities that require repetitive hand movements and unnatural hand positions carry the risk of causing inflammation to the sensitive areas of the hand, long-term ailments like tendonitis and arthritis are extremely common in office settings. While this effect can be offset by good practices and preventative measures like stretching, massaging, and muscle rest, it is just as important to use ergonomic office accessories to tackle the underlying cause of these issues. Users currently experiencing these symptoms as well as those who are looking to prevent them can all benefit from using well-designed computer accessories, and ergonomic mice are the perfect place to start. From a vertical mouse to a trackball mouse and everywhere in between, we’ll break down some of the features of the best ergonomic mice on the market that will benefit any user’s well-being.
- Best ergonomic mouse overall: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Master-Advanced-Wireless-Mouse/dp/B07S395RWD?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-ergonomic-mouse-pcr-20&linkId=76bf71d116ea294108d2518a1722770c&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Logitech MX Master 3</a>
- Best ergonomic gaming mouse: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Razer-Basilisk-Ultimate-HyperSpeed-Wireless/dp/B07YPBX9Y7?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-ergonomic-mouse-pcr-20&linkId=5197dce1a0dc988bc404b9b7b21a5d4e&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Razer Basilisk Ultimate</a>
- Best vertical mouse for arthritis: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Vertical-Wireless-Mouse-Rechargeable/dp/B07FNJB8TT?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-ergonomic-mouse-pcr-20&linkId=d17549525d226f45a7360538f99fad98&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Logitech MX Vertical Wireless Mouse</a>
- Best ergonomic horizontal mouse: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Microsoft-Sculpt-Ergonomic-Mouse-L6V-00001/dp/B00D68ZVY8?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-ergonomic-mouse-pcr-20&linkId=780d0e60842d9beb701d2aad99f86851&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Microsoft Sculpt</a>
- Best trackball ergonomic mouse: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/Logitech-Trackball-Precision-Ergonomic-Bluetooth/dp/B0877V4GW2?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-ergonomic-mouse-pcr-20&linkId=16bde35e487e0c4db9c9d8f386776d64&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Logitech ERGO M575</a>
- Best cheap ergonomic mouse: <a href=”https://www.amazon.com/PICTEK-Programmable-Breathing-Ergonomic-Computer/dp/B01FZ3BR5S?&linkCode=ll1&tag=popularscience-best-ergonomic-mouse-pcr-20&linkId=7c01f30c9b504462ce2379df79973052&language=en_US&ref_=as_li_ss_tl” target=_blank>Pictek Wired Gaming Mouse</a>
The best ergonomic mouse is just a click away
When looking for the best ergonomic mouse for your particular needs, it’s important to factor in the nature of the specific activities you’ll use it for, whether it be gaming, photo editing, general productivity, or a mix of uses. Existing hand and wrist issues, budget, space, and equipment sharing are also important considerations to keep in mind.
How to find the best ergonomic mouse model for you
For the vast majority of users, an ergonomic mouse that most resembles a traditional mouse both in form factor and usage will be the easiest to adjust to and the easiest to learn. The benefits of ergonomic mice tend to increase as the form factor shifts away from conventional designs, with some involving sideways, or “vertical” designs that require a click movement that’s closer to pulling a trigger than pushing a button. Still, if familiarity and versatility are your main concerns, look to a design that splits the difference between fully vertical and traditional designs.
The best ergonomic mouse overall will feature a shape that allows the hand to fall naturally over the surface of the mouse, instead of requiring the palm to tilt down and back toward the user, which will take pressure off the tendons in the wrist. A design that offers a dedicated, expanded grip area for users’ thumbs can add greatly to ergonomic benefits as well. You should also look for traditional features like dedicated scroll wheels that are easy to access with minimal to no extra finger movement required, and wireless connectivity to allow a full range of desktop motion when needed.
Best ergonomic mouse overall: Logitech MX Master 3
The Logitech MX Master 3 is the best ergonomic mouse overall thanks to its comfortable hybrid design, flexibility, and a multitude of productivity-enhancing features. Its battery life lasts up to 70 days on a single charge and offers around three hours of use from one minute of charging. A dedicated thumbwheel and controls above the rest offer superior flexibility while demanding little hand movement, and it’s ready to use with multiple operating systems. You can pair it with up to three different devices using Bluetooth. It’s a horizontal design, so it aims to provide the best of an ergonomic mouse combined with the familiarity of a traditional mouse. Those with ongoing hand problems may still want to opt for a vertical mouse.
How to find a gaming mouse for ultimate precision and speed
Even outside the realm of ergonomic computer accessories, gaming mice are set apart from traditional computer mice by using designs that favor comfort, precision, and speed, especially over longer periods of use.
When choosing an ergonomic gaming mouse, it’s not uncommon to find designs that feature a wealth of easy-to-access onboard programmable buttons that allow users to bind specific functions or actions to their specialized mouse. This extended functionality is miles ahead of that offered by traditional mice and has beneficial applications in gaming as well as graphic design, media editing, and more. High-speed, low-latency responsiveness, and wireless connectivity are key features to look for in the best ergonomic gaming mice, to ensure that every small movement made translates accurately and precisely to the screen. For users who are looking to fully customize their PC gaming rig’s visual design, it’s also important to seek out an ergonomic gaming mouse that includes customizable chroma lighting to ensure a proper match to the rest of their computer accessories.
Best ergonomic gaming mouse: Razer Basilisk Ultimate
This ergonomic gaming mouse from Razer combines extremely low-latency wireless technology with fast mechanical switches to offer users a blazingly fast and comfortable computing experience. The onboard battery life offers up to 100 hours of continuous use along with an easy-to-use docking station and detachable cable. RGB chroma lighting decks out the edges of this mouse, allowing users to easily customize its appearance to match their taste. Because this mouse is incredibly snappy, it should excel at most demanding applications and even benefit some arthritic users due to the ease and responsiveness of its clicking and movement, but it is not a true vertical design, which limits its usefulness to users with existing carpal tunnel syndrome.
A vertical mouse will help greatly if you suffer from—or want to prevent—arthritis
Arthritis is an ailment as unsavory as it is common, and it usually begins as a result of—or is exacerbated by—repetitive movements that can include typing on a keyboard or scrolling with a mouse. The best ergonomic mouse for arthritis will allow users to keep their fingers, hand, and wrist in a position that minimizes joint stress, thereby decreasing the likelihood of contributing to joint swelling and worsening symptoms. Left untreated or unaddressed, arthritis-related swelling in the wrist can lead to the development of carpal tunnel syndrome, which can contribute to numbness, tingling, and pain in the fingers.
When looking for an ergonomic mouse for arthritis, choose a vertical mouse model that allows the hand and wrist to sit in a natural position, angled with the pinky finger closer to the desk surface. Doing so will decrease twisting in the joints and ligaments and reduce pressure in the forearm and wrist area, as well as limit the overall muscle use required for mouse movement. Look for a model that includes a thumb rest, too, as it will encourage and contribute to maintaining a more neutral resting position overall.
Best vertical mouse for arthritis: Logitech MX Vertical Wireless Mouse
The Logitech MX Vertical is the best vertical mouse for arthritis sufferers and users with symptoms from carpal tunnel syndrome. A 57-degree angle keeps your hand in a neutral position during use to prevent twisting of the forearm muscles and release tension in the wrist area. The mouse connects to computers via Bluetooth, USB receiver, or USB-C charging cables, and it features a battery that lasts up to four months on a single charge. Anyone suffering from ongoing ailments or looking to prevent their development will appreciate the relief this form factor and design provide, but one downside to consider in this unit is the lack of sideways scrolling capability that other trackballs and trackpads provide.
A horizontal ergonomic mouse is arguably the best for productivity
In the world of computer accessories, the term “horizontal mouse” refers to the orientation of the user’s palm, which is why most traditional computer mice are classified as horizontal mice. The best ergonomic horizontal mouse will take some of the benefits of vertical mice and split the difference with traditional designs, allowing users to enjoy some, but not all, of the perks of an ergonomic model. Keep in mind that a horizontal orientation will always put some measure of stress on the wrist and forearm, so a horizontal mouse isn’t a good choice for users with existing wrist, hand, and arm issues.
The vast benefits of choosing an ergonomic horizontal mouse are apparent in situations where productivity and flexibility are the primary goals. Because of the design parallels to traditional computer mice, an ergonomic horizontal mouse will feel familiar in users’ hands, making it a good choice for office environments where there will be equipment sharing. No practice is required to use an ergonomic horizontal mouse, so users can simply sit down and begin enjoying a relatively more comfortable experience with no delay.
Best ergonomic horizontal mouse: Microsoft Sculpt
The Microsoft Sculpt is a flexible and portable wireless unit with a thumb scoop and moderately sloped surface that make it the best ergonomic horizontal mouse on the market. A dedicated button offers Windows users quick access to the Start menu, and it connects to users’ systems via an included USB transceiver. It runs off of two AA batteries and offers a battery life of up to 12 months before needing replacement. While this is a great pick for Windows users, it will work with Mac and other operating systems.
A trackball mouse is a great ergonomic alternative to the traditional computer mouse
Trackball mouse designs have long been popular alternatives to traditional computer mice thanks to the intrinsic ergonomic benefits of the design. The best trackball mouse requires no wrist movement whatsoever, opting instead to allow users to control the cursor with minute movements of the fingers or thumbs by freely rolling the trackball in its place. By entirely eliminating the need for wrist and arm movement on the desktop, the likelihood of developing or exacerbating wrist and arm problems through use of a trackball mouse is very low.
When looking for the best ergonomic trackball mouse, find a design that combines a vertical tilt or pitch for the users’ hand to lay comfortably while clicking, and a model with a removable and cleanable trackball for added longevity and flexibility. The limited movement requirements of a trackball mouse have benefits that go beyond the users’ wrists and hands, allowing these models to be used in especially cramped desk environments and making them a flexible option for productive work in almost any location.
Best trackball mouse: Logitech ERGO M575
The Logitech ERGO M575 pairs the best ergonomic mouse design with the added benefits of a thumb-controlled trackball, allowing users precise control of their cursor without the need to move the mouse using their wrist and arm. This, along with its simple and compact design, makes the ERGO one of the best trackball mice for small spaces. The trackball makes scrolling in all four directions a breeze, but since it demands so much thumb movement, users with arthritis or thumb problems may want to look elsewhere.
Office accessories can get expensive, but that doesn’t mean you have to forgo comfort
You don’t have to spend an unreasonable amount to enjoy the benefits of an ergonomic mouse, but there are a few sacrifices in design and flexibility that you’ll have to keep in mind if you’re looking to save money on these office accessories. More advanced features like trackball functionality and wireless connectivity drive up the price of ergonomic mice considerably, so you’ll most likely have to opt for a design that keeps you tethered to your computer via cabling and that requires some measure of wrist and arm movement. The best cheap ergonomic mouse will typically provide users with a horizontal design that allows the fingers and hand to fall naturally over the top of the mouse with limited arching or angling of the wrist. If you’re already suffering from symptoms of arthritis or carpal tunnel, it only makes sense to spend a little extra on a trackball or vertical design, but if you’re looking for a low-impact and easy-to-use ergonomic mouse on a budget, there are plenty of options out there for users like you.
Best cheap ergonomic mouse: Pictek Wired Gaming Mouse
This wired gaming mouse from Pictek is one of the best cheap ergonomic mice available thanks to a host of high-performance features that include five selectable sensitivities and four different polling rates for precision, speed, and accuracy. The shape of the mouse promotes a comfortable grip in a hybrid, horizontal ergonomic design, and it’s finished off by customizable backlit trim that users can turn on and off with the press of a button. Since this mouse is wired, it won’t excel in cramped environments, but this also ensures that you’ll never have to worry about charging it up.
FAQ: people also ask
How do I choose an ergonomic mouse?
If you have existing wrist and hand issues, going straight to a vertical mouse design is an easy way to ensure relief. Users with arthritis may want to steer clear of trackballs, however, due to the demands they place on finger movement. If you’ll be gaming or you’re looking for a more familiar feel, a horizontal ergonomic mouse may be the best option.
What is the most comfortable mouse?
All of the best ergonomic mice on the market are designed to cut down on the aches, strains, and discomfort that come from the repetitive use of traditional office equipment. A vertical mouse is one of the most comfortable pieces of computer equipment available, as it allows the hand to rest in a natural, neutral position during use.
What is the best mouse to use for carpal tunnel?
The best ergonomic mouse overall for carpal tunnel sufferers is the Logitech MX Vertical Wireless Mouse thanks to its natural shape that takes the pressure off of the wrist and forearm area, allowing for the release of tension in the area. Any comparable vertical mouse that promotes a healthy hand position will offer users some relief from the compression that traditional computer accessories may demand.
A final word on shopping for the best ergonomic mouse
Finding the best ergonomic mouse for your desk will make a significant impact on the long-term health of your body by limiting tension in the joints and ligaments of your hand, wrist, and forearm. If you have existing carpal tunnel or arthritis, go with a vertical mouse that doesn’t have a trackball. A horizontal mouse is the best choice for gaming and overall flexibility, while a trackball mouse is a perfect choice for a desk with limited space or users with limited arm mobility.