Golf shoes have come a long way from the hard and heavy leather-soled, metal-spiked, tasseled saddle shoes of years past. Today's golf shoes are built like athletic shoes and have many different options to match the golfer's style and desired comfort.
Benefits of Golf Shoes
Golf shoes can be beneficial to the golfer in a number of ways. Perhaps the most important benefit golf shoes offer is stability. Quality golf shoes are constructed with lightweight yet firm materials to provide a sturdy foundation. They also have solid, wide rubber soles with soft spikes, or rows of rubber nubs, to prevent slipping during the round. Some shoes are waterproof, which is a huge benefit in wet conditions. Another benefit is the comfort and breathability they provide. Good golf shoes will come with well-placed shock-absorbing padding to support the arch, as well as moisture-wicking linings to allow the foot to breathe. All of these features lead to a pretty comfortable 4+ hour walk.
Things To Consider
When looking for golf shoes, you'll want to consider the following:
- What kind of golf shoes are you looking for?
- How much are you looking to spend on golf shoes?
- What size golf shoes do you need?
- Where do you plan on wearing your golf shoes?
What are you looking for in golf shoes?
There are two categories of golf shoes: spiked and spikeless, and they differentiate by what is on the soles.
Spiked golf shoes have a number of screw-in circular cleats (often called spikes) on the sole of each shoe. These cleats usually have six flexible, sharp prongs that grab the turf with each step to improve traction and stability, which is particularly helpful in wet conditions. These cleats will wear down over time, but they are easily replaced with a new set of spikes when they do. This allows the shoes to last for years. Spiked shoes vary in cost, $60-$260, depending on the quality and materials used.
Spikeless golf shoes are usually studded with rows of little nubs for traction. While they lack the traction and stability of spiked shoes, they allow the golfer to wear them to and from the course, as well as throughout the clubhouse, without worrying about harming floors or slipping. These shoes are lighter and normally more comfortable than the alternative. Spikeless shoes vary in price, typically from $35-$260, and their soles will wear over time, so durability is a concern.
- Wet weather
When looking for golf shoes, Footjoy, Adidas, and Nike are among the top brands.
FootJoy is the leading seller of golf shoes in the United States and has a large presence on the PGA Tour. They offer a large selection of shoes, from simple slip-on models priced at $40 to classic waterproof full-grain leather models for around $250. FootJoy offers both spiked and spikeless golf shoes in many of their models for men, women, and youth. They have very lightweight mesh fabric shoes, as well as spiked sandals. If you're looking for a specific type of golf shoe, there's a really good chance FootJoy can meet your needs.
Adidas offers about 12 models of golf shoes for men, women, and children, with prices ranging from $60 to $230. They have a few fully waterproof models and others that are water-resistant. Adidas offers spiked and spikeless options in shoes of different materials and stability. While Adidas offers a leather model, they also have multiple models of shoes made from recycled materials, such as polyester. Many notable PGA Tour players wear Adidas golf shoes exclusively.
Nike offers over ten models of golf shoes for men, women, and youth that range in price from $60 to $200. They have spiked and spikeless options, as well as some waterproof models. Their golf shoes often resemble athletic shoes as opposed to the more formal-looking shoes that golfer's have worn for years. Nike has a major presence on the PGA Tour, with some of the best and highest-profile players like Tiger Woods exclusively wearing Nike shoes.
How do you clean golf shoes?
After each round of golf, it is recommended that you clean your shoes. Clean leather shoes, real or synthetic, with a soft cloth using mild soap and water. After removing the dirt, it is best to let the shoes dry at room temperature. Fabric shoes can be cleaned in a washing machine, but it is best to remove the laces and insoles, as long as they aren't glued in, prior to cleaning.
How much do golf shoes cost?
Golf shoes have a very wide range of prices. Readily available shoes from well-known brands can cost $40-$260. The prices vary according to the materials used in making the shoes and the sturdiness of the shoe. Real leather shoes will cost more than fabric shoes, and sturdy, well-made shoes will be more expensive than slip-on models.
Do certain courses only allow spiked or spikeless shoes?
Spiked golf shoes have been commonplace since the early 1900s, but these shoes had long metal spikes. Just about every golf course banned these shoes by 1997 due to the damage they caused on the greens. The PGA Tour still allows its players to use metal spikes, and some choose to due to the stability they provide. However, today's soft-spiked shoes are allowed wherever golf is played, as are the spikeless models.