The idea of biking has been with us for almost 200 years. From the first “walking machine” invented by Baron von Drais in Germany to the latest models made from aluminum, titanium or carbon fiber, these two-wheeled machines have come a long way. As bicycle design has evolved, so too has their purpose. In the past, bicycles were mainly used for commerce, including the transportation of people and goods, as well as mail delivery. While present-day riders are most likely to use their bikes for recreation, they remain an important mode of transportation and doing business in many parts of the world.

In the U.S. and Europe, people have begun adopting this old-school style of transportation for more than just getting around. Exercise and a lessened environmental impact are just two of the reasons why more people are cycling for both business and pleasure. In fact, Grand Rapids, Michigan is one of the nation’s most progressive cities when it comes to integrating bicycles within daily life. In 2009, Grand Rapids had zero miles of bike lanes; today, there are more than 50, with an additional 20 miles expected by next summer. Ultimately, 100 miles of bike lanes are projected for the greater Grand Rapids area by 2017.

Driven by this love for riding, two Grand Rapids entrepreneurs, Sam Kovalak and Charlie Brickey, created StaFast: the energy-absorbing stem that brings the joy of riding back to the consumer. Racing technology has filtered down to the recreational rider in the form of lighter, stiffer frames and far better wheel sets, tires, bearings, hardware, brakes, and shifters. Along with these improvements, frame geometry has evolved - positioning the rider in a more compact riding position to reduce aerodynamic drag and therefore a higher velocity can be achieved for a given energy input. But to achieve this speed, comfort is often sacrificed due to the removal of shock systems, which can contribute to drag. The Stafast stem lessens the impact of a ride on the rider, allowing for greater comfort and control.

Stafast is the latest innovation in a long line of bicycle development, one stretching all the way back to Baron von Drais. Whether riding to work or racing to win, Stafast is sure to make your biking life better.