Where And How To Buy Golf Shoes

Are you in the market for the perfect pair of golf shoes? The key to buying the best golf shoes lies in understanding your playing conditions, style preferences, and budget.

Whether you opt for spiked or spikeless, prioritize comfort and fit over brand reputation, and consider the material for durability and weather resistance.

Keep reading for a detailed guide to help you make an informed choice that enhances your golfing experience.

Understanding Golf Shoe Styles

Golf shoe styles vary widely, and choosing the right one can significantly impact your comfort and performance on the course.

In this section, we'll dive deep into understanding the differences between athletic and traditional styles, the pros and cons of leather versus synthetic materials, and how the design of a shoe can influence your game.

Athletic vs. Traditional: Deciding Based on the Course

Athletic Golf Shoes:

  • Designed for Comfort: Often lightweight and built with flexible materials, athletic golf shoes resemble standard sports sneakers, offering exceptional comfort.
  • Ideal for Varied Terrain: Their design is suitable for walking long distances on varied golf course terrains.
  • Breathability: They usually feature materials that allow for better air circulation, keeping feet cooler during play.
  • Course Suitability: Best for casual or public courses where a relaxed, sporty look is acceptable.

Traditional Golf Shoes:

  • Classic Style: These shoes have a more formal, polished look, often featuring leather and waterproof materials.
  • Stability and Support: Traditional shoes provide more support and stability, ideal for playing in uneven terrains.
  • Weather Resistance: Better suited for wet conditions due to their construction.
  • Course Expectations: Often preferred at private or country club courses where there’s a stricter dress code.

Material Matters: Leather vs. Synthetic


  • Durability and Comfort: Leather is known for its long-lasting quality and ability to conform to the foot's shape over time.
  • Waterproof Qualities: High-quality leather shoes often come with waterproof guarantees, making them suitable for play in wet conditions.
  • Breathability: Leather's natural properties allow for better air circulation, reducing sweat and heat inside the shoe.


  • Cost-Effective: Synthetic materials are generally cheaper, making them a good option for budget-conscious golfers.
  • Lightweight: They tend to be lighter than leather, which can be beneficial for ease of movement.
  • Less Breathable: Synthetic shoes may not offer the same level of breathability as leather, which could lead to discomfort in hot conditions.

The Role of Design in Golf Shoe Selection

  • Personal Style: Your personal style should guide your choice. Whether you prefer a sleek, modern look or a classic, sophisticated style, there’s a design to suit every golfer.
  • Functionality: Look for design features that aid performance, such as enhanced grip, arch support, or rotational support for swings.
  • Color Choices: Color can be a personal preference but consider that darker colors hide dirt and grass stains better.
  • Customization: Some brands offer customizable options to add a personal touch or match your golf apparel.

To Spike or Not to Spike

Deciding between spiked or spikeless golf shoes is crucial for any golfer, as it affects traction, comfort, and style on the course.

This section explores the advantages of both options and how playing conditions should guide your decision.

Benefits of Spiked Golf Shoes

Spiked golf shoes, often equipped with soft or plastic spikes, are synonymous with traditional golf footwear.

The primary advantage of spiked shoes is the superior traction they provide.

This is especially beneficial in wet or slippery conditions, where additional grip can prevent slipping during your swing.

Spikes also offer more stability, which is crucial when playing on hilly or uneven terrains.

For golfers who prioritize performance and require firm footing to support their swing, spiked shoes are often the go-to choice.

They help in maintaining balance and providing a solid foundation throughout the golf swing.

Furthermore, modern advancements have led to spikes being more comfortable than ever before, with designs that flex as you walk, reducing foot fatigue.

When to Choose Spikeless Golf Shoes

Spikeless golf shoes, on the other hand, have risen in popularity due to their versatility and comfort.

These shoes feature a flat sole with rubber studs or dimpled patterns that provide sufficient grip for most conditions.

The key advantage of spikeless shoes is their versatility; they can be worn on and off the course, making them a practical option for the golfer who values convenience.

Their design also tends to be more lightweight and flexible, offering greater comfort, which can be a significant factor for golfers who play long rounds or walk the course.

Spikeless shoes are ideal for dry conditions and well-maintained courses where extreme traction isn't as necessary.

For those who play in more casual settings or prefer a shoe that blends in seamlessly with everyday wear, spikeless golf shoes are an excellent choice.

How Conditions Influence Your Spike Choice

The decision between spiked and spikeless shoes should largely be influenced by the playing conditions you most frequently encounter.

If you often play in wet, muddy, or slippery conditions, or on courses with significant elevation changes, spiked shoes are advisable for their superior grip and stability.

In contrast, if your golfing is predominantly in dry, firm conditions, or if comfort and versatility are your priority, spikeless shoes are more appropriate.

It's also worth considering owning both types to alternate based on weather conditions and course characteristics.

For instance, during a dry summer, spikeless shoes might be preferable, while in the rainy season, spiked shoes could provide the necessary traction.

Ultimately, the choice depends on a balance between performance needs and personal comfort preferences, with an understanding that different courses and conditions may require different footwear solutions.

Finding the Perfect Fit

Finding the perfect fit in golf shoes is not just about size; it's about ensuring comfort, performance, and longevity.

This section delves into the nuances of getting that ideal fit, balancing comfort with performance, and understanding how different brands may affect your choice.

The Importance of Proper Sizing in Golf Shoes

  • Measure Your Feet: Foot size can change over time. Get your feet measured professionally, preferably in the afternoon when feet are their largest.
  • Account for Socks: Consider the thickness of the socks you'll wear while playing golf. Thicker socks require a slightly larger shoe.
  • Check for Space at the Toe: There should be about a thumb's width of space from the end of the longest toe to the front of the shoe.
  • Heel Fit: Ensure the heel fits snugly without slipping. A slipping heel can cause blisters and affect your swing.
  • Width Matters: The shoe should be comfortable across the widest part of your foot. Too tight, and it can cause pain; too loose, and it can affect stability.
  • Walk Around: Always walk in the shoes to ensure they are comfortable and don’t pinch or rub anywhere.

Comfort vs. Performance: Striking a Balance

  • Cushioning: Look for adequate cushioning, especially if you walk the course. This can reduce fatigue and increase comfort.
  • Arch Support: Good arch support is vital for stability during your swing and comfort over long periods.
  • Flexible Yet Stable: The shoe should flex at the forefoot for comfortable walking but provide stability around the mid-foot and heel for your swing.
  • Breathability: Especially important in warmer climates to avoid overheating and sweating which can lead to discomfort.
  • Waterproofing: If you often play in wet conditions, waterproof shoes are a must, but remember, they might be less breathable.

Brand Differences and Fitting Trials

  • Try Multiple Brands: Sizes and fits vary between brands. What is a 10 in one brand might feel like a 9.5 in another.
  • Consider Insoles: If you have specific needs, like high arches, consider brands that accommodate or provide space for custom orthotics.
  • Online Purchases: If buying online, check the return policy. It’s often wise to try on shoes in a physical store before purchasing the same model online.
  • Breaking In: Some shoes require a break-in period. Leather shoes, in particular, can soften and conform to your foot over time.
  • Seasonal Changes: Your feet can swell in summer or shrink in colder weather. Consider this if you're buying shoes out of season.
  • Long-Term Fit: Think about how the fit will feel after hours on the course. A slightly snug shoe at the store might become uncomfortable after several hours of play.

Balancing Budget and Quality

Balancing budget and quality is a vital aspect of purchasing golf shoes, as it determines both the longevity of the shoes and the satisfaction you'll derive from them.

This section explores the various price ranges of golf shoes, the importance of a waterproof warranty, and strategies for making a cost-effective choice without compromising on quality.

Understanding the Price Range of Golf Shoes

Golf shoes come in a wide range of prices, catering to various budgets and preferences.

Budget-friendly options can range from $20 to $60, offering basic functionality and comfort, suitable for casual or beginner golfers.

These shoes might lack advanced features like superior waterproofing or enhanced traction but are adequate for dry conditions and less frequent play.

Mid-range golf shoes, priced between $60 and $200, strike a balance between cost and quality.

They often feature better materials, improved design for comfort and stability, and some degree of waterproofing.

High-end golf shoes, which can cost anywhere from $200 to $400, are designed for serious golfers who prioritize performance.

These shoes boast superior materials, advanced technology for maximum comfort and stability, and often come with extended waterproof warranties.

They are built to last and perform in various playing conditions.

The Significance of a Waterproof Warranty

A waterproof warranty in golf shoes is crucial, especially for golfers who play in early morning dew or in wet conditions.

This feature ensures that your feet stay dry, which is essential for comfort and preventing blisters or other foot ailments.

Waterproof warranties vary in length, with some lasting for a year and others extending up to two years or more.

High-end golf shoes usually offer longer and more comprehensive waterproof guarantees, reflecting the quality and durability of the materials used.

When considering a waterproof warranty, also look into the terms and conditions, as some warranties may become void if the shoes are not properly maintained.

How to Make a Cost-Effective Choice

Making a cost-effective choice in purchasing golf shoes involves balancing price with your specific needs and how often you play.

For occasional golfers, investing in a high-end pair might not offer the best value for money.

In such cases, a mid-range shoe that offers a reasonable level of comfort, durability, and waterproofing can be sufficient.

Regular players should consider investing in a higher-quality pair, as they will stand up to frequent use and are likely to be more cost-effective in the long run.

When shopping, compare different brands and models to find the best combination of features and price.

Also, consider the timing of your purchase; buying off-season can often yield discounts.

Another tip is to read reviews and ask for recommendations from fellow golfers, as this can provide insight into the real-world performance and durability of the shoes.

Shopping for Golf Shoes: Golf Shops vs. Online Stores

Choosing where to buy your golf shoes is as important as selecting the shoes themselves.

This section compares the experiences of buying at a physical golf shop versus online stores, highlighting the advantages of each and offering tips for making the most of your online shopping experience.

Advantages of Buying at a Golf Shop

  • Personalized Assistance: Golf shops typically have knowledgeable staff who can offer advice on the best shoes for your needs and playing style.
  • Immediate Try-On: You can try on multiple pairs to find the best fit and feel the materials, an advantage not available online.
  • No Waiting Time: Purchasing in-store means you can walk out with your shoes immediately, without waiting for delivery.
  • Supporting Local Businesses: Buying from a local golf shop supports your local economy and the golf community.
  • After-Sales Services: Some stores offer services like fitting adjustments or immediate returns if there’s a problem with the shoes.

Online Shopping: A World of Options

  • Broader Selection: Online stores often have a wider range of brands, styles, and sizes than physical stores.
  • Convenience: Shopping from home is convenient and allows you to easily compare prices and read customer reviews.
  • Potentially Lower Prices: Online retailers may offer better deals, discounts, or free shipping options.
  • Access to Rare or Specialized Models: Some specific models or sizes might only be available online.

Tips for Online Purchases: Sizing and Returns

  • Check the Sizing Guide: Always refer to the brand’s sizing guide, as sizes can vary between manufacturers.
  • Read Customer Reviews: Reviews can provide insights into sizing, comfort, and durability from other golfers’ experiences.
  • Understand the Return Policy: Before buying, know the return policy, especially if you’re unsure about the size or fit.
  • Order Multiple Sizes: If possible, order two sizes and return the one that doesn’t fit. Just ensure this aligns with the return policy.
  • Look for Free Shipping and Returns: This can reduce the risk and cost of having to return shoes.
  • Keep Track of Sales and Discounts: Signing up for newsletters or alerts can keep you informed about special offers.

Maintenance and Care of Golf Shoes

Proper maintenance and care are essential to extend the lifespan and performance of your golf shoes.

This section will cover the importance of using shoe trees for maintenance, regular cleaning practices, and additional tips to prolong the life of your golf shoes.

The Role of Shoe Trees in Shoe Maintenance

Shoe trees play a vital role in maintaining the shape and condition of golf shoes.

They are particularly important for leather shoes, as they help to smooth out creases and prevent the leather from cracking over time.

Inserting shoe trees immediately after each use can also help to absorb moisture and odor, keeping the shoes fresh.

For optimal results, use cedar shoe trees, as cedar not only helps in retaining the shape of the shoe but also has natural moisture-wicking and deodorizing properties.

Regular Cleaning Practices

Regular cleaning is crucial to keep your golf shoes in top condition.

After each round, remove any dirt or grass from the spikes or soles.

This can be done using a soft brush or a special tool designed for cleaning golf shoe spikes.

For the upper part of the shoe, use a damp cloth to wipe away any dirt or stains.

If you have leather golf shoes, use specific leather cleaners and conditioners to keep the leather supple and prevent drying and cracking.

For synthetic materials, mild soap and water will usually suffice.

It's important to let your shoes dry naturally at room temperature after cleaning; direct heat or sunlight can damage the materials.

Also, avoid submerging your shoes in water, as this can affect the glue and other materials used in the construction.

Extending the Life of Your Golf Shoes

To further extend the life of your golf shoes, there are several additional steps you can take.

Firstly, alternate between two or more pairs of shoes if possible, as this allows each pair to fully dry out and rest between rounds.

This is particularly important in wet conditions or if you play frequently.

Secondly, consider using waterproofing sprays or treatments, especially for leather shoes, to enhance their water resistance over time.

However, ensure that any product used is suitable for the specific material of your shoes.

Thirdly, check and replace the spikes on spiked golf shoes regularly to maintain traction and stability.

Worn spikes can not only affect your grip but can also cause uneven wear on the soles.

Finally, store your golf shoes in a cool, dry place away from direct sunlight when they are not in use.

Avoid storing them in your car or garage, where temperatures can fluctuate, as extreme conditions can degrade the materials.


In conclusion, selecting the right golf shoes is a blend of understanding your personal needs and the nuances of shoe features, from style and material to fit and budget.

Whether you choose to shop in-store or online, prioritize comfort and functionality to enhance your golfing experience.

Remember, regular maintenance and care extend the life of your shoes, ensuring they remain a valuable asset on the golf course.

With this comprehensive guide, you're now equipped to make an informed decision, ensuring your golf shoes are not just a purchase but an investment in your game.