RSI - Repetitive Strain Injuries


Many computer workers have complaints that indicate Repetitive Strain Injuries (RSI), also called the mouse arm. RSI is an umbrella term for physical complaints that are generated by repetitive movements.

The symptoms are pain complaints, tinglings of hands or wrists, deafness and loss of power, especially in neck, shoulders, arms, wrists and hands. Monotonous work, a bad attitude and stress facilitate the desease. RSI currently account for over 60 percent of workplace injuries.

This page contains information resources on the causes, consequences and treatment of RSI, and on the measures you can take to prevent RSI.

General Resources


Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS)

Compaq: Safety & Comfort Guide Contents

CTD Resource Network (CTDRN)

An organization that provides educational material and charitable assistance related to the prevention and treatment of cumulative traima disorders (also known as repetitive strain injuries).


Deborah Quilter's RSIHelp.com

A personal site with a lot of RSI-info: risk factors, warning signs, prevention tips, and finding a physician or support group.

Dutch RSI Center

A commercial advice agency that is specialized in RSI problems. The RSI-Center helps organizations and individuals prevent and fight RSI. This site contains some very useful services:

  • You can use RSI-Search to search for information in the best RSI related sites and mailinglists.
  • The RSI Personal Risk Profile Test analyses tour risk and its contributing factors, and estimate your chance of already experiencing RSI-related complaints.
  • If you already have complaints but no clear diagnosis, you can take the Indication of Diagnosis Test. It estimates your change of having one or more of some 20 possible RSI related disorders describing their diagnosis and treatment.
  • If you want to discuss RSI-related problems, use RSI-Discussions, a mailinglist in English and Dutch.
  • In the RSI-Links section you'll be able to browse through an annotated structured list of RSI resources.
  • In Books on RSI you'll find some reviews of books on RSI.


Harvard RSI Action

A page on RSI written and maintained by Harvard students. The site contains information on causes, consequences and prevention of RSI.

Health and Safety: Musculoskeletal disorders in Europe

Trade Union Technical Bureau [TUTB] of the European Trade Union Confederation [ETUC].


MIT's RSI Information Page

A short explorations of questions like what is an RSI, who is at risk, where does it hurt, and what should I do?


Nederlandse Vereniging voor BedrijfsFysiotherapeuten (nvbf)

A short expose by A. van Duyne on the character and causes, symptoms and stadia of RSI. There's also some information on prevention strategies and possibilities for reintegration.

NIOSH: Ergonomics and Musculoskeletal Disorders



RSI in de Industrie

by Liesbeth Kluyver, advisor working condition of the Federation of Dutch Trade Unions ('Bondgenoten')
In general RSI is caused by repetitive movements, not only by working on computers, but also in industrial work. This article clearly demonstrates the emergence of RSI, the complaints, the responsability, treatment and measures to prevent RSI in industrial settings.

RSI Kennisbank

A Dutch knowledge base on RSI.

RSI Theory & Therapy for Computer Professionals


Typing Injury FAQ

An educational site provided by the CTD Resource Network. It contains a wide variety of information about RSI's, resources for dealing with these ailments, and a broad description of assistive products to reduceinjuriy risk and symptoms.


Wat is RSI?

Short explanation of RSI by the Dutch Ministry of Social & Economic Affairs. Dutch only.

Diagnosis of RSI: Syndromes and Symptomes

Dutch RSI-Center

  • Free RSI Quick-Scan
    This test gives a first indication of your risk of getting RSI and the chances of already having RSI-related problems. Presented by: The Dutch RSI-Center
  • RSI Personal Risk Profile Test 
    Find out if you are at risk. This test not only analyses your risk and its contributing factors, but also estimates your change of already experiencing RSI-related complaints. You'll have to pay a small sum for the reports. Presented by: The Dutch RSI-Center.
  • RSI Indication of Diagnosis Test 
    When you already have complaints, but no clear diagnosis yet, you can take this test that estimates your chances of having one or more of some 20 possible RSI-related disorders describing their diagnosis and treatment. It might give you a better basis for your discussions with medical experts. You'll have to pay a small sum for the reports. Presented bij: The Dutch RSI-Center.

FNV Bondgenoten

  • RSI test
    This Dutch RSI-test gives an indication of the risks of getting RSI on your working place. Answer 10 questions, hit the score button and you'll get a first advice.
  • RSI-testen
    Seven tests for the identification of causes of RSI with screen labor. The scores of the tests will be aggregated.

Prevention of RSI

Marxhausen, Paul [1996]

Computer Related Repetitive Strain Injury
Some good basic advice on prevention of RSI.

RSI Preventie

A Dutch site with information on the genesis of RSI and the possibilities to prevent it.

RSI preventie aan de EUR

Background information on RSI (What are the risc factors?), the identification of RSI (What are the symptoms?) and prevention of RSI I (How can I prevent RSI?). Special attention for recent developments on RSI prevention, such as software for voice recognizing, shortcuts as alternative for mouse use.

Treatment of RSI

Treatment of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Medical Aspects of CTS

RSI Recovery Page

Editor: David Ruegg. Information on recognizing the signs of RSI, how to treat it, and how to avoid it. It also contains a discussion forum and a list of links.

Support Groups

ACT RSI Support Group (Australia)

RSI-UK: Self-Help for RSI in the UK

Concentrates on strategies for recovery.


The Dutch association of RSI patients provides information on the RSI disease and on the Dutch people who suffer from RSI.

Stichting RSI Nederland: Muisarm.nl

A Dutch RSI Association.

WRIST: Workers' Repetitive Injury Support Talk

A nonprofit organization run by injured workers for injured workers. London and Area, Ontario.

Yahoo!: RSI-Support

More RSI Support Groups

Presented by the Typing Injury FAQ, an educational site provided by the CTD Reseource Network, Inc.

Medical Aspects

Bower, Peter [1996] Twenty Clinical Truths About RSI

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS) Treatment of CTS

Greening, Jane [2000] Medical Evidence for RSI

A review of a report that describes marked changes in sensitivity to vibration in patients with RSI. It was the first demonstration of a quantitative sensory deficit in patients with this disabling condition.

Products & Services

BreakWare: Software for RSI prevention and recovery


An ergonomics package that you can install on your own computer. It monitors your mouse and keyboard use (intensity and duration) and warns you with light and sound signals when you are overusing your computer. It might help you to prevent RSI complaints. For Windows95/98/NT only.


RSI prevention tool that tracks your activity behind the computer and recommend you to take a brake after intense periods of activity. The program keeps a log, so users can analyze their working habits later on.

RSI Shield

RSI-Shield helps you to eliminate or avoid the causes of RSI. It let's you decide how many breaks you and and will make sure you will get them. Almost every aspect of the breaks and the 'intelligence' of the program is customizable. It informs on finding the correct working posture and doing exercises during a break. RSI-Shield can be fully controlled by keyboard.

RSI Watcher

Stretch Break

Presented by Work Solutions Netherlands.


A sophisticated computer ergonomics package that monitors your mouse and keyboard use. Using personalized settings the software then displays small pop-up windows, suggesting the best times for taking regular breaks (micro and macro pauses). Warning messages are shwon when the computer has been used more than self-determined maximums and at regular intervals a regime of onscreen exercises isdisplayed. It also offers education on ergonomics, the ability to record and analyse many aspects of computer activity, and facilitates for organizing different settings for many users on large networks.


  • SpeechWare adds voice as an input option to create a multi-media computer environment, freeing you from dependence on the mouse, keyboard and stylus for many applications. People who enter data and commends more rapidly by speaking than by typing or tapping can be more productive. Don't buy a speech recognition product until you have tried them out. Some people get voice problems from it, or don't have the commitment to really get it working well.
    Dragon Dictate (Dragon Systems)

    Free Speech Browser (FSB)

    Access the Internet using the power of your voice. Just say where you want to go, and FSB brings you there. The program appears as a moveable toolbar on your destop.
    Free Speech (Philips)
    ViaVoice (IBM)
    Voice Express (Lernaut & Hauspie)

    Computing Out Loud

    An excellent site on voice recognition, created by Susan Fulton. Includes user reports on programs and assorted gadgets, useful macros and links to sites of the software manufacturers.

    Forum voor Spraak en Spraakherkenning

    A Dutch forum for exchange of knowledge and experiences between people using voice recognition.
    Join the list by sending an empty email to: [email protected]


    A Dutch review of speach recognizing software: Free Speech (Philips), Via Voice (IBM), Dragon Dictate (Dragon Systems), Voice Express (Lernaut & Hauspie). Editor: Elizabeth Bax.

    Voice Users Mailing List

    The home page for the voice-users mailing list discusses all aspects of using voice recognition input systems.

Ergonomic Hardware: Keyboards, Pointers and Furniture

Dvorak Keyboard

The Dvorak keyboard is an ergonomic alternative to the layout commonly found on typewriters and computers known as "Qwerty". The Qwerty keyboard was designed in the 1870s to accommodate the slow mechanical movement of early typewriters. The layout was intended to place common two-letter combinations on opposite sides of the keyboard. The Dvorak keyboard was designed with emphasis on typist comfort, high productivity and ease of learning. The middle row of keys includes the most common letters, and common letter combinations are positioned in such a way that they can be typed quickly (16 times faster than on a Qwerty keyboard!). Presented by Randy Cassingham ('This is True').

Dvorak Keyboard

A personal view on the Dvorak keyboard by Dylan Mcnamee (Veaverton, Oregon, USA). It includes a precise FAQ.

Dvorak Keyboard, The

Jeff Bigler is one of the Dvorak keyboard advocates, who demonstrates how easily this keyboard can be learned by experienced Qwerty typists.

Introducing the Dvorak Keyboard

Information on the Dvorak Keyboard. Includes a Dvorak newsletter and links to other Dvorak sites. Editor: Marcus Brooks (Austin, Texas, USA).

Ergonomic Products and Services

A list of links to ergonomic keyboards & pointers, prevention and recovery software, gloves and splints, ergo services and supppliers, furniture, and legal services.

Office Ergonomics

Provides useful overviews on various ergonomic office equipments aimd at ergonomic committee members as well as office workers in general. You can test your conventional wisdom and learn something new on the basics of hand/wrist, back pain, eyestrain, chairs and keyboard.

Pocket Ergonomist

New Zealand's official ergonomic guide. This shareware version provides basic ergonomic information in Windows Helpfile format. Designed and written by David Brown and Robin Mitchell.

Gizmos: Pros and Cons of Ergonomic Office Equipment

Advice and Consultancy


A full service occupational ergonomics company, providing innovative software solutions, professional consultation and training, and credible information to a worldwide audience. In the Reference Room you'll find documents involving standards and regulatory compliance and a book/journal listing with abstracts, bibliographical references and links to the homepages of professional organizations in ergonomics.

Mailing Lists


To subscribe send an email to [email protected]. In the body of the message enter: "subscribe alt-keyboards "

Forum voor Spraak en Spraakherkenning

A Dutch forum for exchange of knowledge and experiences between people using voice recognition.
Join the list by sending an empty email to: [email protected]


This US oriented mailing list for people with RSI's not only has a large audience and much traffic, but also many experts which are prepared to share their knowledge. The list is managed by Deanna McHugh.
To subscibe Sorehand send a message to: [email protected]
In the body of message enter: subscribe sorehand


A mailing list for the overall organization and planning of an international RSI Awareness Day to raise public awareness about repetitive strain injuries, prevent other from being injured, and promote understanding and acceptance for those with RSI.
To subscribe send an empty email message to [email protected].


RSI-list intended for those living on the east coast of the USA, but it is open to everyone. Users discuss their experiences, and offer support, referral and treatment information to one another.
To subscribe send an email to [email protected].
In the body of message enter: "subscribe RSI-East ".


A mailing list organized by the RSI-patient association.
Join by sending an empty email to: [email protected]


The RESI Network newsletter is provided by the CTD Resource Network for dissemination of information to the RSI-community.
To subscribe send an email to [email protected].
In the body of the message enter: "subscribe"


Forum for RSI/Injured Worker support group leadership, related resource organizations and professionals assisting with related issues. The list is provided by the CTD Resource Network, Inc.
To subscribe send an empty email message to [email protected].


A UK mailing list for RSI-sufferers who want to exchange information and offer eachother mutual support. A fairly large European audience with many interesting discussions.
To subscribe send an email to [email protected] with the first line reading "Join RSI-UK".

Voice Users Mailing List

The home page for the voice-users mailing list discusses all aspects of using voice recognition input systems.

References: RSI-Centrum NL | Tifaq

News Groups

Directories & Guides

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