Golf shoes are an absolutely necessary element in every golfer’s equipment, not only because they allow us to improve our game.
But also because there are strict rules regarding the type of shoes to be used on the course (although for beginners it may be allowed to use running shoes as long as the sole does not cause any kind of damage on the course).
Golf shoes, for the most part, are designed with the specific and clear objective of helping you in your game, having a better interaction with the turf and offering you the best comfort.
Many are made with high-level technologies and include a multitude of different options and improvements, which is undoubtedly great but also greatly complicates the choice, as it makes us doubt about which will be the best option for our specific characteristics and needs.
That’s why we are going to help you learn how to choose the right golf shoes. We will analyze the basic elements to take into account when choosing the golf shoe that best suits you.
We will try to give you the best advice and recommendations to guide you in the correct choice of your golf shoes.
How do I choose golf shoes?
Mainly, golf shoes are made to help you play better and offer you the comfort you need to move around the course.
This is achieved thanks to a wide base to promote your balance in the swing, accompanied by a low cut in the ankle area that focuses on a better movement.
The cleats, in case you have them, allow better stability even if there are wet conditions, typical of cold climates or bad weather.
These would be the “basic rules” in the construction of golf shoes (hence the importance of using golf shoes and not “any” footwear); from there you must take into account a number of keys, starting from the budget you want to spend on the purchase of footwear.
For example, a shoe made of leather is usually more expensive than a synthetic one, they are also more durable, waterproof and in terms of aesthetics, they have a better finish.
But, money aside, the fundamental key when choosing footwear is, without a doubt, the comfort that the shoe in question provides, the stability, the grip, the range of movement it has and its correct adjustment to the specific anatomy of your foot. All these criteria will directly affect your game.
It is essential to find a model that fits correctly to the shape of your foot, avoiding shoes that slip or squeeze.
Breathability is also essential, otherwise, in summer for example, you will have hot and wet feet, which will undoubtedly affect your game more than you think.
Studded Soles vs Non Studded Soles
The cleats are a factor that you should take into account, at the beginning they may not be so necessary, however, as you evolve in your game it is advisable to acquire them.
Golf shoes without cleats are usually much more comfortable and flexible, it is true, but on the other hand, they will not be very useful if the course is wet or humid due to balance issues.
We can say that the main difference is that cleats offer you a better grip in any condition of the course, provide stability and better control during the swing.
As a first criterion before choosing golf shoes, we must determine the type of sole we need, since its influence on our game has a huge impact, considering that it affects important points such as comfort, design or shape.
The sole will determine the grip you will have, the balance and comfort in your movements and in your stride.
Generally speaking, there are three types of soles: without studs such as spikeless, with metal studs or nails and rubber studs, let’s see below in more detail:
- Spikeless sole: they prove to be the most comfortable as long as the field is dry, like during the summer for example. They can be used both on and off the field, enhancing their versatility. They are usually much lighter, however, those who have used cleats may feel that the grip is not as effective.
- Sole with metal studs or nails: special care must be taken with this type of sole, as they are forbidden in practically all golf courses. They turn out to be aggressive with the turf, ruining the aesthetics of the courses. Unfortunately they used to have good grip, however, it is less and less likely to find any model on the market, due to the aforementioned.
- Sole with rubber studs: soon after their introduction to the market, they gained increasing and constant popularity. They were much lighter than golf shoes with metal or spike studs, improving also their grip and were perfect for cold or wet climates. However, the only “but” that this type of sole may have, is that its cleats must be replaced periodically, as they lose their effectiveness with use.
There is a wide range of materials and treatments, as well as technologies, when manufacturing footwear for golfers. The vast majority of the materials used are of high quality, and as long as they are at least mid-range, they tend to be tough and durable.
However, if the manufacturing material is an important element when choosing your golf shoes, you should start by determining the type of climate of the course where you are going to play.
In this sense, it would even be convenient to choose two types of golf shoes: one for tropical or summer climates and another one for humid or winter climates.
It is true that there are shoes with many characteristics that would be useful in any type of climate, but there will always be a criterion that is not completely covered.
For example, golf shoes made of synthetic leather, being quite resistant and in some cases may have a water-repellent coating, are very hot for the foot.
They do not have sufficient breathability and in summer climates can be quite uncomfortable. On the other hand, golf shoes made of fabric have excellent breathability, but are the worst option in cold and humid climates.
It is best to opt for a golf shoe that has a Gore-Tex treatment being a high quality waterproof membrane, perfect for winter climates, but at the same time, for other seasons where temperatures are high, it is a highly breathable shoe.
Currently in the market there is a wide range of brands dedicated exclusively to the production of materials, textile products, accessories and footwear for golfers; adapting their needs in quality products and optimizing their technologies to improve your game.
The following are the best brands in the manufacture of high quality golf shoes:
FootJoy: presents a range of possibilities to choose from, with excellent materials, technologies and models for both men and women, and of course, for children also has specific models. You can choose traditional, classic, elegant, retro, sporty, with or without studs. It has a variety of membranes and construction materials. Its innovation in golf footwear is constant and is very involved with the requirements of golfers.
Adidas: known worldwide for its wide range of products, including a section dedicated to golf. It offers high quality footwear, with the brand’s own technologies and a variety of designs for men, women and children.
Skechers: known for its footwear for runners and active people, stands out in the market for its original golf shoes, keeping in most of the models its characteristic shape in the footwear. Styles commonly vary between sport and street, adapted with cleated or smooth soles.