Touch typing is now a popular typing technique which totally does away with the reliance on sight when you type. This kind of typing is primarily based on placing dependence on your motor reflexes and is usually induced by undergoing an effective training and constant practice. As you begin to master touch typing, your fingers will get more and more accustomed to this technique. This definitely means they will be able to gravitate to the right keys without you been forced to glance down the keyboard every now and then. Well, if you are really keen on mastering this method, here then are some tips on just how to type fast without looking at the keyboard as you do so. However, let us first take a closer look at the history of touch typing.
The history of touch typing
Touch typing is widely believed to have been developed by Frank Edward McGurrin in the latter part of the 19th century, 1888 to be more precise. McGurrin was by a profession a Salt Lake City law court stenographer and he allegedly fine-tuned this typing technique while teaching typing classes. He is said to have bagged a momentous victory when he was pitted against Louis Traub in a Cincinnati typing competition. This all important victory enabled McGurrin to successfully popularize his new typing technique. The term writing by ‘touch’ was first put forward by Bates Torrey in 1889. In the following year, Lovisa Ellen Bullard went on to define the new typing method in her book and the name stuck. Today, touch typing is executed via the QWERTY keyboard, which was invented specifically for this typing technique.
The home row keys
When you start to learn how to touch type, the first thing you will be taught is what are known as the ‘home’ row keys. Typically, your hands must revolve around these middle row keys of your keyboard. On the left side, the home row keys are A, S, D and F. While those of the right side are J, K and L. Also, there are 2 of these home row keys that have been positioned to correspond with each of your index fingers and are marked by raised bumps. These are the F and J keys, and they are meant to assist you keep your hands on the home row and to rapidly return to it after you press other keys away from this row. All of which you will be able to do without having to look down on your keyboard as you engage in typing.
The right touch typing finger placement
As you can evidently see, touch typing teaches you to know how to use the right finger placement on the keyboard as you type. Generally speaking, each of the fingers on your hand (with the exclusion of the 2 thumbs) have an assigned dedicated key, which they can rapidly and conveniently reach. The particular design of the QWERTY keyboard guarantees that the letters which are frequently utilized or pressed in close succession are well spread out. This goes a long way in facilitating for remarkably quick typing with the utilization of both hands.
What are the benefits of mastering touch typing?
By far the most prominent advantages of learning how to touch type are promoting drastic improvements in typing speed as well as accuracy. Ideally, the average typing speed currently stands at 41 words per minute (WPM). On the other hand professional typists can register speeds of up to 100 WMP and above. When you take the necessary time and effort to master touch typing, you can rest assured of improving your typing speed to at least 60 WPM, which is not bad at all. What all this really boils down to is you will come to discover that you take a short time to type even the most lengthy and detailed documents. In turn, you will be able to take more work and handle it with a high level of precision; thereby improving your productivity.
At the same time, this ingenious typing technique also dwells on the right typing best practices in terms of avoiding injuries when you type. As such, touch typing is in an excellent position of minimizing the potent risks of sustaining repetitive stress injuries. Some of the most notable are carpal tunnel syndrome and even tendinitis. By integrating the ideal finger placement that touch typing teaches, you will be able to evenly distribute the overall strain exerted on all your fingers instead on just a few of them.
My name is Daria Postoyalkina, I’m a development manager at Ratatype. This project helps children and adults to learn touch typing via an online typing test and lessons. I am in charge of developing the proper typing lessons and exercise for typists who want to improve their typing speed.