Rocker Plate Testing with Saddle Pressure Mapping




  • It’s a long one at 30+ minutes, but I decided to leave it that way to show the process and review as much as possible, for clarity.
  • Here are start times to major sections if you want to find something in particular.
    • Rocker Setup (1:23)
    • Tests 1 & 2 for all rocker settings (2:37)
    • Data Review of tests 1 & 2 (7:53)
    • Tests 3 for all rocker settings (19:36)
    • Data Review of all tests (22:26)
    • Final Data Capture for all tests (29:06)

General Info

  • Using a Saddle Pressure Mapping device to capture pressure from the body on the saddle.

  • This includes a Rigid Setup (equivalent to a trainer on the floor), then adding Rocker Plate motion (at 3 different leveling spring settings).

  • I used the bike and trainer mounted on the rocker plate for all tests. I used wood shims to eliminate motion from the rocker plate for the Rigid setting. This serves as a baseline/control for comparison to the motion that comes from the 3 different rocker plate settings, and whether that motion alters the pressure on the saddle.


  • The common theory is that adding motion will change pressure on the saddle, and lead to more comfort for the rider. The rocker plate is an attempt to get a more natural feel and function to the bike on the trainer, that may be similar to the motion we have when riding outside.

Basic Review

  • The improvement starts right away when you move from Rigid (fixed) trainer to a Stiff leveling spring setting on the Rocker Plate. It is similar for the Medium leveling spring setting.

  • There is notable difference with the Light leveling spring setting. The bike and trainer are very free to move, almost to the point of being “hard” to ride and balance upright. It is possible a bit lighter than the setting I use on my current setup. The center of pressure moves fore and aft a bunch compared to any of the other tests.

Initial conclusions

  • I need to do a deeper dive into the summary data I captured at the end, but initial review seems to indicate that adding a rocker plate does reduce the peak pressure on the saddle.

Knee Pain on Trainer
Rocker Plates for Trainers

Here is some initial analysis:


This is great! Thank you for posting. Do you have a DIY blog post or video laying out how you built the rocker plate?


Section 6 has what you need, @GravelNut