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Ergonomics Tip

Slowing your mouse down

You can do this easily on most computers by following the instructions below. Adapting to a much slower mouse can dramatically reduce the muscle tension in your arm, and reduce the risk of arm or hand discomfort.

Tips on adapting to a slower mouse

Most of us have been using the mouse with default ‘high-speed’ settings quite a long time. It can therefore take a while to get used to a slower mouse. Below are a few tips to help you get used to the change:

  • Make sure you have plenty of space on your desk to move the mouse. Many desks (especially those with special ‘keyboard trays’) leave far too little space for the mouse. You really need a clear area of desk about 10 inches (25 cm) square.
  • Don’t hold the mouse with your thumb and little finger. Instead, try to ‘cup’ it in your hand, with your fingers resting on the mouse buttons (not held above!)
  • Try to move the mouse from the shoulder (not the wrist), using larger forearm movements and keeping your wrist straight and your hand relaxed.

Adjusting your Windows mouse speed setting

Note: These instructions are for the default Windows mouse driver. If you have a different mouse driver (if, for example, you are using a special mouse or trackball), then the Mouse settings options may be a bit different. If you cannot work out how to make the right adjustments yourself, contact your IT Help Desk for assistance.

  1. Click Windows Start button and type control panel
  2. Click on the Control Panel app
  3. Click on Mouse
  4. Select Pointer Options tab.
  5. Untick the Enhance pointer precision checkbox
  6. Shift the Motion slider left a few steps.
  7. Press Apply and try out the new mouse speed. If its too slow, increase it again.
  8. Click OK.