13 Golf Shoes That Are Anything But a Style Handicap
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The best golf shoes for men might surprise you. Golf style has made massive strides in recent years, but for decades, on-course gear mostly comprised old-school staples like giant-fit polos, pleated pants, plaid bucket hats, and saddle shoe-like spikes—clothes befitting the sport’s reputation for rigid traditionalism. But as kettlebell swings replaced post-round cigars for the game’s top athletes, the clothes they wore on the links got trimmer, stretchier, and sportier, leading to an entirely new wave of golf shoes that put comfort, performance—even cool factor!—above country club dress codes.
And yet, even as the game’s swaggering new stars waged a subtle war against the sport’s stodgy sartorial mores, an interesting phenomenon was beginning to take shape among its younger fans. Instead of emulating the poly-blend polos of the pros, a wave of brands started embracing a “return to old” approach. Thanks to a handful of next-gen enthusiasts, classic-leaning polos and sweater vests started popping up in tee boxes around the world. Ditto dress-y golf shoe options. (The most important difference? The performance cues those newfangled shoes took from their gym-inspired brethren.) The result is a new breed of golf shoes that are so comfortable, Tiger Woods himself ditched his Nikes for the first time in 25 years to rock ‘em. So to help you reckon with the sport’s revamped look, we went deep on that exact pair—plus 11 more of the best golf shoes for men—below. Tee time is now.
The Best Golf Shoes, Period
With the Tarlow, FootJoy achieved something truly special: a golf shoe steeped in tradition but built for the modern game. The ultra-supple calfskin details and full leather lining means these are shoes that will hold up round after round, year after year. (The advanced outsole with replaceable spikes also offers maximum grip in any rough or sand trap.) Best yet, their old-school styling is ideal for every kind of fit you’re apt to tee up in, whether you dig the mesh-y, highly-breathable polos of today or the more traditional, all-cotton styles of yesteryear. If they’re good enough for Tiger Woods and his surgically repaired, well, everything, then they’re good enough for you too.
The Best Serious Golfer’s Shoe
Modern-day golfers need a lot of things to milk the most out of their performance, including practice, patience, a well-balanced fitness regimen, and, perhaps most important: a shoe that delivers when it matters most. The Tour 360 is the 22nd iteration of Adidas’ most premium golf shoe, and this time around, the brand spared no expense. Solid uppers and a leather lining promise years-long durability, but the real wow factor comes in the form of the Three Stripes’ proprietary Boost midsole. That single flourish guarantees the same kind of ultra-cushioned comfort you’d expect from any other Adidas sneaker in your rotation (minus the spikes on the outsole).
The Best Sneakerhead-Approved Golf Shoe
With casual golf style on the upswing, it was only a matter of time before the golf community and sneaker culture collided. And what a collision it was! Not too long ago, Jordan brand decided to fully embrace the synthesis and re-issue their most iconic silhouettes as fairway-finding gems, like these “Bred” Air Jordan 4s that are almost identical to the ones you already own—or still lust after. In a typically stuffy and elitist sport, these shoes swerve in the face of the country club guard, the perfect embodiment of the kind of energy the younger generation brings to the
table, er, links.
The Best Spikeless Golf Shoe
Nike’s iconic Air Max 90—onetime running shoe turned streetwear staple—gets the golf treatment while holding fast to all the things we’ve loved about it for over 30 years. There’s the wedge-like shape, the visible Air unit, and the tasteful swoosh, all done up in a course-ready silhouette that locks your foot down for good. (They’re also waterproof, in case your next shot is coming pond-side.) Soft spikes mean you don’t have to click-clack your way through crowded parking lots ever again.
The Most Comfortable Golf Shoe
Inspired by classic Puma kicks like the Clyde, these are as close to your favorite sneakers as a pair of golf shoes will get. Their ultra-simple styling means you won’t look goofy sipping on some post-game cocktails in the clubhouse, and—better yet—you don’t have to change your kicks before and after rounds. (Trust us: For perennially late course-arrivers, that matters.) The all-leather uppers are fully waterproof too, but how you handle the sweat-inducing pressure of your next prize-winning putt is on you.