Tacx NEO Motion Plates Review: Are They Overpriced?

Tacx NEO Motion Plates review: Tacx NEO 2T with NEO Motion Plates on a wooden floor (view from the ground level).

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This is my Tacx NEO Motion Plates review. I’ve used them with Tacx NEO 2T smart trainer for a few weeks.

I also have experience using bike trainers with rocker plates, so I will share my thoughts in this article.

The question is:

Are Tacx NEO Motion Plates worth it?

Yes, if you are limited by space and don’t mind the lack of side-to-side movement. Then, feel free to buy them here.

However, their price might be hard to justify for some people. You could invest in a rocker plate side-to-side and fore-and-aft movement instead.

Continue reading for more info.

Tacx NEO Motion Plates Pros & Cons

Pros

  • Provide fore-and-aft movement
  • Don’t take as much space as rocker plates
  • Sleek integration with Tacx NEO smart trainers
  • Easy installation
  • Front wheel riser included

Cons

  • No side-to-side movement
  • Front wheel riser could be higher
  • They tend to fall out when lifting and moving the trainer
  • Pricey

Also available at performancebike.com and wiggle.co.uk

Unboxing and Setup

The NEO Motion Plates box doesn’t include only the plates but also a front wheel riser (more about it later).

One of the things I like the most about the plates is their easy installation. It takes just a few seconds.

Furthermore, they are compatible with past NEO trainers. But remember, they are not compatible with Tacx NEO Bike because it has a different design.

Once the plates are installed, it’s hard to notice them. However, they increase the trainer’s height by about 2 centimeters.

Tacx NEO 2T on a wooden floor (right side).
Tacx NEO 2T without motion plates
Tacx NEO 2T with NEO Motion Plates on a wooden floor.
Tacx NEO 2T with NEO Motion Plates

So, you should compensate for a different riding position with the front wheel riser. The included one is too low, in my opinion (it’s the same one included with Tacx NEO 2T). So, it could be at least 2 centimeters higher.

When riding indoors, I prefer having a handlebar little higher for increased comfort. So, a book or higher front wheel riser solves this.

After installing them, the only issue I noticed was that they tended to fall out when I moved the trainer to my training area. It is, therefore, necessary to be careful when lifting the trainer.

My Experience

It’s no surprise that rides with motion plates are more comfortable. This is because the fore-and-aft movent adds another axis of movement.

This video demonstrates the fore-and-aft movement of the Tacx NEO Motion Plates

These additional movements result in reduced friction between the saddle and my bottom.

Tacx NEO 2T provides a side-to-side tilt of about 3° degrees. So, together with the fore-and-aft movement, it provides more freedom of movement.

Rigid bike trainers that don’t allow any saddle movement basically act as sandpaper. When we pedal on a bike, we tend to move in a wave-like pattern.

A simple illustration of a bike saddle movement when riding outside
An illustration of a saddle movement when riding outside

This motion eliminates friction and almost guarantees better comfort. When you fix the saddle, the only thing that moves is your butt which rubs against the saddle. That’s why indoor cycling is often so uncomfortable.

Other benefits of NEO Motion Plates are that the rides are more engaging, thanks to the freedom of movement.

Yes, riding out of the saddle takes some time to get used to, but the same applies to rocker plates.

Detail on the Tacx NEO Motion Plate bearing.
Tacx NEO Motion Plates bearing detail

The last benefit is that the NEO Plates reduce the forces and stress applied to the frame. Although this is not a problem with today’s frames, it’s something you might be interested in.

Also available at performancebike.com and wiggle.co.uk

Tacx NEO Motion Plates Alternatives

The closest alternative to NEO Motion Plates is a rocker plate.

Rocker plates are universal, allowing you to use them with different bike trainers.

Their biggest disadvantage is the size. They take up more space and are hard to store.

Turborock's Realplate Stealth on a wooden floor with a Wahoo KICKR bike trainer and a mounted Specialized Tarmac SL7
A rocker plate (Realplate Stealth) | Source: turborocks.co

Tacx NEO Motion Plates FAQ

My Verdict

I appreciate how sleek the NEO Motion Plates look on Tacx NEO trainers. They are easy to install and don’t take up much space.

However, they are also costly. So, their price is hard to justify unless you find them in a bundle with NEO 2T trainer.

Don’t take me wrong. It’s a great product, but the pricing seems unfortunate. You can get a full-sized rocker plate, which is compatible with other bike trainers, for the same price.

This being said, Tacx NEO Motion Plates are suitable for a specific group of people.

Buy them if you have a Tacx NEO trainer, are limited by space, and have money burning a hole in your pocket.

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