Although its primary function is to help you write by hand, that shouldn’t be the only thing that matters when you go shopping for a pen. A better one should help you fight discomfort and hand pain. Nothing does that better than an ergonomic pen.
I know that probably sounds like a cliche with pen manufacturers today throwing that term around, and you are right to doubt such promises. Not all ergonomically designed pens are great.
To help you find a pen that will improve your writing experience, I searched the market for options that have lived up to their hype. Some of the factors I considered include pen shape, weight, type of grip, and ink flow.
Here’s what I found to be the best ergonomically designed pens in the market today.
- Pentel EnerGel-X Retractable Liquid Gel Pen – Best Overall, Best Budget
- PILOT Dr. Grip FullBlack Refillable & Retractable Ballpoint Pen
- Uni Alpha-Gel Jetstream 0.7 mm Ball Point Pen
- Super Big Fat Pens for Arthritis
- PenAgain Ergosof Pen
Best Overall, Best Budget
5 Best Ergonomic Pens – Reviews
Pentel EnerGel is a highly-rated gel pen, and justifiably so. It delivers clean, precise lines, but what elevates it above the rest is the latex-free grip and short tapered tip that take the pain out of writing. The last thing you have to worry about when using this pen is finger fatigue or discomfort.
- Shape: long, thick, and balanced
- Ink flow: gel ink
- 0.5mm needle tip (other sizes available)
- Retractable design
- Latex-free rubber
- Weight: 1.6 ounces
Unlike most of its rivals, Pentel EnerGel uses a shorter, tapered tip, which means your fingers will stay on the latex-free grip. For pens with a longer tapered end, fingers tend to slide down the pen often leading to an uncomfortable writing experience.
A lightweight body gives you more control over the writing experience while the different tip sizes mean that the user has the freedom to choose a pen that guarantees better writing and results.
- Comfortable, easy grip for smooth writing
- Ink dries quickly, minimizing smearing for left-handed people
- Needle tip allows for more accurate, convenient writing
- Ink flows smoothly; no blobs or skips
- The latex-free grip makes it a healthier option
- Refillable with the color of your choice making it convenient and eco-friendly
- Refills are slightly expensive, almost the same price as the pen, but worth it
Put this pen to paper and you will immediately realize why it’s been christened the best ergonomic pen. Make it part of your essential ergonomic tool kit. It’s ideal for both left- and right-handers and those keen on precision in their writing.
For this Pilot Dr. Grip pen, ergonomics came first. A wide barrel, soft cushioned curvy grip, and short tapered tip define its uniqueness as an ergonomic writing pen. Even the Arthritis Foundation has given it a thumbs up for its abilities.
- Shape: wide barrel
- Medium pen tip size (fine point available)
- Multiple ink options, including ballpoint and gel ink
- Latex-free grip
- Weight: 2.39 ounces
It’s easy to achieve an optimal grasp with this pen because of the soft cushioned curvy grip and wide barrel. As a result, you get to write neatly and quickly without tiring. A shorter tapered tip keeps your fingers from sliding down the pen for a better writing experience.
It may not be the most lightweight pen, but the weight distribution is balanced in a way that stabilizes your hand movements to allow for clean accurate writing.
- A wide barrel relieves your hand muscles from strain and minimizes fatigue
- Soft cushioned grip for stress-free writing
- Expert-recommended means you can fully trust in its abilities
- Smear-resistant ink makes it ideal for lefties
- Available in different ink colors to suit your different activities
- Regular refills for Dr. Grip may not fit this pen, but there are third-party cartridges that do
You don’t have to struggle writing anymore, especially if you have arthritis or a condition that makes this process difficult. Get this pen and it will take away the stress and pain.
Two things make the Uni Alpha-Gel special: a metallic finish and a wider soft gel grip. It’s a pen you won’t have to hold aggressively in order to write, and you won’t be afraid to show it off.
- Shape: long, thick, and balanced
- Brushed metal body
- Medium pen tip
- Soft gel grip
- Ink flow: ballpoint
- Weight: 1.12 ounces
While other ergonomically designed pens prefer rubber for their grips, this model goes against the norm by using a soft gel grip which offers a more comfortable and secure grip, especially if you are unable to grasp your pen tightly.
What’s more, the gel grip absorbs heat from your fingers which then softens it to allow for a smoother writing experience.
Looks don’t disappoint either. Even though only visible under bright light, the textured look on the pen surface, almost resembling a wood finish, evokes a premium feel.
- Soft squishy gel grip aids in correct pen grip development
- A versatile option that can be used by both teens and adults
- Accepts EnerGel refills which adds to its versatility
- The metal frame offers the user a bit of weight; enough to steady your fingers
- The metal finish makes it stylish and elegant
- Wobbly ink cartridge but you can replace it with EnerGel refills for a better writing experience
For an experience that’s different from what rubber grip offers, this is the pen you will want to consider. It’s also refined and classy enough to achieve the same effect as a beautiful tie, watch, or car. Have it in your office alongside a good ergonomic chair for optimal results.
This super big fat pen isn’t your average pen. Just as the name says, it’s big and wide yet easy to hold, which makes it a welcome relief for anyone with limited dexterity. Conditions such as arthritis stand no chance against this pen.
- Shape: hourglass and contoured
- Wide large barrel
- Medium pen tip
- Detachable lanyard
- Curvy rubber grip
- Weight: 1 ounce
People who have trouble completing everyday writing tasks will find it easier to use this pen because of its large diameter barrel and curvy grip. It’s easier to hold and will require little pressure on your part to lay down neat, clean letters.
A lanyard enables the user to hang the pen around the neck. When you suffer from restricted hand mobility and want to limit the stress on your fingers, the lanyard will save you from tasks that may tire you such as rummaging through files looking for a pen.
- Easier to grip due to the wide barrel
- Little to no pressure is needed to write because of even weight distribution
- Detachable lanyard to keep from misplacing the pen
- Free refills are included to last longer
- Ink flows steadily to allow for smoother writing
- A shorter length may not be comfortable for some hands so check to see that suits you
Whatever condition is stopping you from enjoying the writing process, this pen may just deal with it. It’s been a blessing to those with arthritis, Parkinson’s disease, dyspraxia, autism, writer’s cramp, calluses, carpal tunnel syndrome, and other hand weakness
Enough about pens with grips. Here’s something different; PenAgain, the manufacturer, says that the hand – and nothing else – informed its design. Does it live up to the promise? Let’s find out!
- Shape: wish-bone
- Finger cradle
- Silicone coating
- Medium pen tip
- Weight: 0.5 ounces
You would think that lack of grip would make this pen a pain to use but the design instead incorporates a finger cradle that lets your fingers rest in their most natural position for stress-free writing.
Also, unlike the rest of the ergonomic writing pens on this list, it features a Y-shaped design. The reason behind this is to keep you from squeezing the pen tightly as you write, thus minimizing gripping strain. Instead of using manual force, the pressure to write will come from gravity.
- Soft silicone coating for extra comfort
- Uses gravity instead of pressure from your hand, preventing hand fatigue
- The finger cradle allows for healthier finger and hand movement
- Dynamic design that works for both left- and right-handers
- Easy to refill (plus, it comes with extra refills to keep you going)
- Only black ink refills are available from PenAgain but you can use third-party cartridges
Just like the Super Big Fat Pen above, Ergosof offers increased comfort for people with serious hand weaknesses. It makes writing a smooth experience that the user can engage in for hours without feeling tired or fatigued.
What Is An Ergonomic Pen?
Ergonomically designed pens make the writing experience more comfortable, especially for those who experience difficulties in writing due to conditions such as arthritis, Parkinson’s, and carpal tunnel. It saves the user from using a lot of pressure or straining in order to write by hand.
What To Look For In Ergonomic Writing Pens?
With these kinds of pens, there’s no one-size-fits-all option; it all boils down to your specific needs and preferences. Observe how you interact with your pen before you go shopping.
If you have a serious condition that makes writing difficult, talk to a specialist first (in case you haven’t) for guidance on what pen best suits you. Once that’s done, consider the points below as they will help you find the most suitable pen.
A pen with a shape that’s easy to grasp is generally viewed as ergonomic. Most are long, thick, and well-balanced but some manufacturers have deviated from the norm to create pens with hourglass figures, curvy shapes, and delicately chiseled contour lines.
Each of these shapes was created due to the need to address certain issues. For example, wider pens don’t require a firm grip, which makes them ideal for people who have conditions that make grasping small objects difficult.
An ergonomically designed writing pen should not be too heavy or too light. Striking the perfect balance between these two is what separates the best from the rest.
Being able to hold it without straining is a good start. It should also require very little pressure on your part as you write.
Some manufacturers distribute more weight at the tip to save you from applying lots of pressure. If a pen has more weight distributed at the top, you could have a hard time using it.
Type Of Grip
A poor grip surface such as plastic or metal is a common culprit behind finger discomfort and bad handwriting.
A great pen should at least have a grip, preferably one made of a substance like rubber that’s easy on the fingers and non-slippery. The texture of the rubbered grip ranges from pen to pen.
If you are the kind of writer who holds their pen very firmly, opt for an extremely soft grip that can absorb some of the pressure and vice versa.
Ink flow matters because it’s tied to the force you apply when writing. If it flows with some difficulty, as is the case with most ballpoint pens, you will find yourself struggling to write smoothly.
Check how the ink flow mechanism works to be sure that the writing experience is free of strain. Rollerballs or gel ink pens are the most recommended.
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the qualities of a good pen?
Top on the list of characteristics a great ergonomically designed pen should have is an easy-to-grip barrel that increases comfort while writing. It should also feel smooth as you write, with no blobs, skips, or scratchiness.
Other important qualities include a well-balanced weight, steady ink flow, stylish design, quick ink drying time, easy refill, quality tip, durability, and reasonable pricing.
How important is a pen grip?
A correct pen grip guides the hand and fingers into an ergonomic position that enables the writer to hold their pen accurately and experience better finger movement while writing. You will control and improve your handwriting as a result, and also experience fewer aches and pains when you write for long periods of time.
How can I make my pen less painful?
Unless you are using a pen that’s ergonomically designed, chances are high that you will experience hand pain and fatigue, writer’s cramp, and other frustrating conditions.
A quick and convenient solution would be to just replace the pen with an ergonomic one, but if that’s beyond your budget you can try the following tips:
- Don’t put a lot of pressure on your forearm while writing
- Relax your fingers as you write
- Rest your hands often and try exercises that improve hand mobility
Last Word About Ergonomic Pens
Writing should be a pleasant experience, even when you have limited dexterity. If you have been suffering when you put pen to paper, either in the moment or later, now is the best time to change that by getting yourself a good ergonomically designed pen.
Since we all wish to have the best ergonomic pen, the Pentel EnerGel-X Retractable Liquid Gel Pen would be a great start. It not only features an easy-to-hold grip and ergonomic barrel design but also a needle tip that lets you write more accurately. You can refill it with a color of your choice as well, without using third-party cartridges.
The rest of these pens are also comfortable to use, stylish, and practical. You just need to weigh your needs and preferences against the features to identify the option that suits you best.