If you’re looking to add some more real-life feel to your TACX NEO trainer, you’re in luck. The team at TACX just released TACX NEO Motion Plates, an upgrade that will bring multidirectional movement to TACX NEO, NEO 2, and NEO 2T smart trainers.
TACX NEO Motion Plates — What is it?
The new TACX NEO Motion Plates give your NEO trainer slight 360° movement while riding indoors. The newfound fore and aft movement combined with the slight side-to-side motion built into the NEO 2 design gives a sensation of all-over movement. The motion plates allow for natural pedal stroke both in and out of the saddle, giving another dimension to indoor riding without the bulk of a training platform.
“Cyclists are always looking for ways to make indoor training more productive and enjoyable,” said Dan Bartel, Garmin vice president of global consumer sales. “By adding multidirectional movement to the Tacx NEO smart trainers, the Tacx NEO Motion Plates make for one of the most dynamic and natural indoor riding experiences yet.”
Why add motion plates? If you’ve spent lots of time on the trainer this winter and during Covid, you may have noticed some stiffness in your pedal stroke and an unnatural feeling during hard in-the-saddle efforts. A static trainer can’t replicate the feel and flow of the outdoors unless you have a motion platform or a Rockerplate to simulate. The platforms do well in adding 360° movement to the rider but at the cost of a considerable space footprint and usually result in a permanent installation.
The Tacx NEO is a relatively small piece that attaches to the foot of the TACX NEO smart trainer and maintains the compact footprint, raising the unit’s height only slightly, and comes with a new wheel block to match.
TACX NEO Motion Plates — Installation
The TACX NEO Motion Plates install easily. Remove the factory rubber pieces under the trainer and attach the motion plates (labeled right and left) to the corresponding sides, and you’re good to ride.
The motion plates “snap” in place by magnetically attaching to the underside of Tacx NEO smart trainers.
The new wheel block has a shallow depth and a groove for running fore and aft while the rear of the trainer is in motion. The new wheel block slot is intended for smaller tires; no big gravel or MTB treads here.
TACX NEO Motion Plates — How do they ride?
If you have a TACX NEO trainer, you’re aware of the slight side-to-side motion built into the design, like the rough road mimicking vibrations. What the trainer lacked was a real-world “free-floating” rear feel. The TACX NEO Motion Plates achieve that with an elegant and super simple solution.
I could feel the change immediately when I hopped on the bike, but it wasn’t like a new trainer. I felt less confined, especially when climbing steep pitches virtually. The movement is slight but feels much more prominent on the bike. The front-wheel block works well to keep the motion fluid and doesn’t inhibit the feel of the trainer.
So far, I’m very impressed with the quality and ease of use with the Tacx NEO Motion Plates. The $300.00 price tag is hefty, but it would be well worth it if you ride indoors and cherish your floor space.
Stay tuned for more after we have a propper indoor race and hammer session on the Tacx NEO Motion. Until then, I’ve been pleased with the newfound movement in one of our favorite trainers.
Price and Availablity
The Tacx NEO Motion Plates have a suggested retail price of $299.99 and are available now on garmin.com.