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Discussion Starter #1
I’ve been considering some sort of support belt for the past couple of years as anything over a 1-hour ride would leave me sore. After reading reviews, and thanks to a couple of recommendations here, I bit the bullet and headed over to Koolbak.com to order a belt.

Following their measurement instructions, I discovered that I was in the 41” category, dead between large and XL. So, as the instructions suggested, I called the number to discuss getting a custom variant made. I was surprised when the owner of the company picked-up! After talking through the situation with him, we discovered that he and I are the exact same measurement and he took my order on the spot for a white-mesh custom.

I placed the order on a Tuesday morning and received the custom-sized belt that Friday! Considering he is on the West Coast, and I’m in the mountains of East Tennessee, that’s impressive turn-around for a custom product!

I have to admit, as I unboxed it, my first impressions were mixed. The fit and finish are excellent, with obvious care taken in the stitching and edging. It was also much lighter than I was expecting with my only previous back-support experience being leather weight-lifting belts from my ill-spent youth. I was also surprised with how the mesh resisted flexing but still looked like it might allow a bit of airflow. But, with all that said, I really wasn’t expecting much out of $33 worth of mesh, webbing, and Velcro.



Call me a convert.

I strapped the belt on under my riding gear this past Saturday, and headed out about 6 in the morning and headed-up to Deal’s Gap. My back typically starts hurting after my first run to the store from the Tennessee side, usually right at 1-hour after leaving the house. To be honest, I was flat out stunned when I pulled into the parking lot 100% pain free. I actually felt so good that instead of my usual 15-minute rest break to stretch out and take a couple of Advil, I immediately turned around and made another run back to the overlook. I had quite forgotten what it was like to not have my lower back ache on my bike.

To make a long story short, instead of my typical two passes and head home routine, I was able to ride for 5-hours, only stopping to hydrate, answer nature’s call, and chat with other locals. Without my back hurting, I was finally able to concentrate more on my technique and moving around in the seat.

On my way home, for the first time in years, I found myself looking forward to the next ride instead of my recliner and a heating pad.

Pros:
Great Back Support
Great Customer Service
Breathable
Comfortable enough that I was able to forget I had it on

Cons:
I took me 4-years to buy one
It adds about 1” to your waistline, so order your pants accordingly (actually worked out well for me as I’ve lost 55lbs since last year and my riding pats were almost too big. The belt added just enough that I don’t have to replace them just yet!)

My Koolbak belt is now an essential part of my riding gear and I can recommend it with zero reservations!
 

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bought mine in 2010 and no complaints. i put my belt over the waist of my pants.
 

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Nice review. Thanks. Does it come with a cat, or is that an optional extra?? :D
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Definitely an option! Hanta, and his brother, Hoshi, get into enough trouble in the house. I don't even want to think about them on a bike!

Here are the Bengal Brothers in one of their few restful moments:

 

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I have been using a KoolBak for 3 years and won't ride without it.

I find if I have perfect posture I can't feel it but if I slump it gives both support and it reminds me to correct my posture.
 
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