Whether you are an adult or a child, these days we are never too far away from a computer keyboard so it’s more important than ever to learn how to type faster.
Did you know that touch typing is at least 2 times faster than being ‘a fast typist’. So for every 6 hours of your working week that you are currently typing you will save 3 hours……that gives you 3 more hours to get your tasks completed and finish work on time! It’s a no brainer!
Unfortunately, if you are hunting and pecking with two fingers, your typing speed will never increase. The fastest speed you can ever go with two or four fingers is about 40 words per minute. But you will be looking up and down at the keyboard, which isn’t the most efficient way to type.
If you want to learn how to type faster, the best thing to do is to learn how to touch type properly! By learning to use all of your fingers to type and without looking, you will soon be able to type automatically without thinking, with speeds in excess of 70 or even 80 words per minute.
Not only that, your accuracy will also increase which means fewer errors and frustration!
Here are some tips to help you to learn how to type faster…
Ensure your workstation is setup correctly to touch type
Posture is so important when learning to touch type. Get it wrong and it can not only affect your typing but cause problems with neck, shoulders, wrists and fingers.
Here are some tips for best posture when touch typing:
1. Ensure you have a good sturdy chair, preferably a non-swivel chair to stop arms and wrists from moving too much. Rest your back against the chair and use a cushion if needed.
2. Aim to have your belly button in line with the height of your desk. This means your arms are at a perfect angle between 90° – 110°.
3. Push the keyboard away from you so you have plenty of desk space for your forearms. (So many students we see have their wrists breaking at the edge of the desk). This also ensures adequate space for your elbows to move, avoiding hunched shoulders.
4. Try and keep your wrists neutral, neither lifting up or down. You can use a wrist support, but make sure it’s an ergonomically designed one as sometimes they can cause more harm than good. The idea is that they should really support your palms rather than your wrists so make sure it is pushed up against the keyboard.
5. Your eyes should be level with the top of your screen.
6. Consider using a separate keyboard and mouse for optimum flexibility of movement. You can then use a laptop stand, to help elevate your screen so you are not looking down at it.
7. Keep the keyboard flat – do not use the little feet as this will cause your wrists to flex.
8. If you prefer to type with a more open stance e.g. fingers/wrists more than 110°, you could consider using a split keyboard. These are recommended for our dyspraxic students and those with hypermobility.
9. Your feet should be flat on the floor so your legs form a 90° angle at the knees. Use a footrest if needed.
Here’s a checklist to help you get your typing workstation properly set up.
Make sure your arms and wrists are positioned correctly
We see so many students who type with their elbows sticking out.
Other than potentially causing back and shoulder problems because of leaning forwards, it causes the fingers to splay at an acute angle, making it very difficult for them to go straight up or down on the keyboard.
What often happens is that the finger moves diagonally across instead of upwards which means they end up hitting the wrong key.
When learning how to type faster, it’s important to try and keep the elbows in towards the body.
Some people’s fingers naturally sit at more of an angle, and for this reason, it’s worth considering using a split ergonomic keyboard.
Getting the finger positioning right and using the right keyboard is paramount to avoiding aches, pains and errors whilst learning how to type faster.
There’s no shortcut to learning to touch type I’m afraid.
Before you learn how to type faster, you have to dedicate some practice time. It takes about 10 hours to learn plus another 10 hours of practice. It’s only after this, that typing becomes automatic and you learn how to type faster.
My biggest tip is to not rush it. The process of learning to touch type involves a lot of muscle memory, so practicing little and often over a longer time period gives a better result than trying to rush it.
At the end of one of our 10 week flexi time home courses, speed will vary, anywhere between 20-50wpm. Everyone is different.
BUT…it’s important to remember that very quickly, with continued practice, speed will continue to increase, sometimes doubling or tripling over the space of a few months.
It’s well worth the investment. Once learnt, that’s it, you never have to do it again!
At Type IT! one of the first things I say to a student learning to touch type is – please don’t focus on the speed.
Because if you learn how to type faster too soon, you end up tripping over your fingers, not thinking about where your fingers need to go and so you end up making lots of errors.
A parent messaged me yesterday saying that her daughter has a weekly typing competition at school using the test ‘fast-fingers’. They have to type (bashing with their two fingers) as fast as they can to try and beat their classmates. No touch typing, no focus on accuracy, just speed.
And this is why she is struggling to slow down and type accurately. So we have had to go back to basics.
When learning how to type faster, slow and steady wins the race, every time with the added benefit of accuracy as well as speed!
And when the skill is finally learnt, that’s when the magic happens 🪄
Find the right touch typing course and support to help you learn how to type faster
If you try to learn how to type faster on your own, there’s a lot that can go wrong.
Without proper instruction and assessment, there are so many things that you may not realise you are doing wrong from the outset.
The reason I know this?
Because around 50% of our students are doing it WRONG and we can see this when they send us their videos.
So, what sort of things are they not doing right and why is this a problem?
👉 Keyboard too close to edge of desk – means forearms and wrists are not supported.
👉 Thumbs not resting on the keyboard – fingers are totally out of position and may cause joint pain over time.
👉 Fingers not returning to home keys – means they are out of position and can’t get to the bottom row keys quickly enough. Will also cause errors.
👉 Using the wrong fingers – fingers wander around the keyboard too much and do not stay on the home keys.
👉 Typing too fast – tripping over their fingers and making lots of errors.
We personally review EVERY video that gets sent to us because it’s so important to iron out problems early on.
I would urge you to think twice about a free online course. Bad habits are difficult to undo. Learn how to type faster the right way with us and sign up for one of our tutor supported courses.
Check out our range of touch typing courses to see which would suit your needs and enable you to learn how to type faster and enroll online. Alternatively, give us a call on 020 8434 7111 to have a friendly chat about how we can help you!