In my new series of blogs, Kogel Cares, I will flip the communication and put you: our readers, riders, and friends at the center of attention. I want to know how you feel. Give me your take on each week’s topic and submit your responses here. 1 person every week will win a $100 Kogel Gift Card.

- Ard Kessels

3 Issues that Restrict Your Cycling Performance

In our never-ending quest to make riders go faster with less energy, the Kogel team is always looking for new product ideas that improve cycling performance that could be added to our portfolio. We follow a strict set of rules before pressing the go or no-go button. They involve bike expertise, performance, customizability, and convenience.

World class cyclist

Can we add expertise? 

We love ceramic bottom brackets and brake pads because they are complicated. We love it when professional bike mechanics call us with questions because T47-68, T47-86.5, and T47-85.5 are confusing. We never blame the caller for lacking some information. Mechanics have to look at every area of a bike and be experts on all of them: thru axle spacing and threading, headset bearings, tire treads - the list goes on and on. At Kogel, we are hyper-focused on a few areas, so we naturally became experts in those limited areas. Always happy to share!

Can we add performance?

The main reason why Kogel makes wheel bearings and ceramic bottom brackets, but not headset and pivot bearings, is the fact that rotating bearings can make bikes go faster! They do what a ball bearing is supposed to do: go around in repetitive circles.  Headset and pivot bearings mostly rock back and forth across 15 degrees or less. As much as we would love to, we can not make anyone steer 20% faster.

Image courtesy of our friend Julian and

Can we customize it?

I am a self-declared bike snob and love color-matching parts on my bike, or mismatching for that full in-your-face color explosion effect! Let’s face it: ball bearings can be kinda boring. They are invisible, quiet, and hard-working. For almost ten years I have been on a mission to turn ball bearings into cool fashionable products. The unsung heroes of your riding experience deserve such attention. The creativity I see from our friends in the Kogel Collective is unlimited. If Kogel can add a product to our portfolio and it is customizable, it pulls the product to the front of the line.

Kogel Brake Pad and Bolt Image

Does it fit in a manila envelope?

This seemingly random question comes from a very practical point of view. At Kogel, we love creating premium performance bike products that are easy to ship. As much as I respect frame and wheel builders, it always sounds like a warehousing and logistics nightmare to me. And don’t get me started on lubes and cleaners! Shipping liquids brings a whole new level of problems in packaging and the fact that the US Postal won’t pick it up. Kogel products typically fit in the palm of your hand.

Mountain Biker

Your turn...

Now that I went over the parameters of a new Kogel product, let’s refer to the title of this blog. I would love to know what is holding you back on your rides. If you could change three things on your bike, what would those be? More storage? More aero? Better durability? Less creaking?

I would love to hear from you! Please share your issues at this link to inspire our product team and hopefully soon we can set you up for your best cycling experience ever - AND a $100 Kogel gift card.

Ard Kessels