Although you can play golf in just about any sneakers, if you take the sport seriously, it is worth investing in the best golf shoes. When you swing your golf club, there is a lot of twisting and pivoting, never mind the power of your swing and hit. These motions are very different from walking or running.
Golf shoes have been specially designed for the motions involved in golf, making it a lot easier to do these movements on grass and other golf course terrain. Both sneakers and golf shoes are moisture wicking, comfortable, and breathable, but there are a lot of features that differentiate the two.
Let’s take a look at the 5 best golf shoes as well as the features needed to make a well-informed purchasing decision.
Best Golf Shoe Reviews
1. Adidas Men's Tech Response 4.0WD Golf Shoes
If you need a pair of golf shoes that are comfortable and breathable while boasting the ultimate in stability and traction, these Adidas shoes may have just what you are looking for.
These trendy golf shoes have the classic Adidas look while still giving you sturdy grip, letting you easily walk and swing with ease and confidence, whether it is wet, dry, sandy, or grassy.
Golf shoes with this sneaker style are popular thanks to their stylish look and high comfort levels. Plus, you can wear these shoes as normal sneakers because they don’t have metal spikes.
The outers of these shoes are made from synthetic and textile materials, while the sole is made from durable and grippy rubber. These shoes have 6 cleats that ensure that you have excellent traction throughout your swing and when you walk the golf course.
These shoes are available in a number of sizes from 7 to 15. You can also choose from 3 different colors, including black/white, grey/white, and white.
What's to like about the Adidas Men's Tech Response 4.0WD Golf Shoes
These shoes are very easy to put on and take off. They are remarkably breathable, comfortable, and lightweight. You can wear them straight out the box without having to break them in.
What's not to like about the Adidas Men's Tech Response 4.0WD Golf Shoes
These shoes are quite narrow, so they may be too tight if you have very wide feet. They are not waterproof, which makes playing on early winter mornings difficult.
2. NIKE Men's Explorer 2 Golf Shoe
If you always want to look your best on the golf course while also having shoes that offer excellent traction and stability, this modern NIKE shoe is bound to have the right fit and color option for you.
These modern, stylish golf shoes have a normal sneaker look while still giving you excellent grip for you to walk and swing with confidence, no matter whether it is soggy and wet or dry and hard. The shoes have a water-resistant upper to help keep your feet dry.
The outsoles of these shoes are made from durable rubber and the outer is made from a strong leather and polyester blend. These shoes have aggressive traction to keep you firmly in place when swinging.
The tongue’s pull tab helps you easily put these shoes on and take them off. The upper has debossed lines that give you added structure as well as stability.
These shoes are available in a number of sizes from 7 to 15. You can also choose from over 10 different color combinations, including orange/white/black, white/black, and white/black/red.
What's to like about the NIKE Men's Explorer 2 Golf Shoe
These shoes do not need to be worn in and are very comfortable out the box. These shoes also have a very sleek, modern appearance that looks great on the golf course.
What's not to like about the NIKE Men's Explorer 2 Golf Shoe
These shoes are not suited for golfers with very wide feet – even the extra wide sizes are quite narrow. The water resistance only works for very light wetness, such as light dew.
3. Skechers Men's Go Elite 3 Golf Shoe
If you want a waterproof shoe that is lightweight, cushiony, comfortable, and stylish, this shoe gives you just that, allowing you to focus on your game while the shoes do the hard work.
You can wear these strong and lightweight shoes right out the box without any issues. The waterproof, breathable leather upper is deco-stitched to be soft and comfortable, offering you great water protection. The midsole is made from responsive, lightweight 5GEN cushioning.
The synthetic sole has high-grip TPU nubs for increased traction. The outsole is made from cushiony, high-rebound materials that give you added support and stability when swinging and walking.
Additionally, you can walk on any surface or terrain without needing to change your shoes. Your feet can easily flex and move as you walk thanks to the low-drop design. Each shoe weighs less than 12 ounces, making it lightweight and comfy for walking on the golf course.
This shoe is available in 8 different color options, including charcoal/red, white/black, and grey/lime, so you can select a pair that suits your taste. They also come with a 2 year waterproof warranty.
What's to like about the Skechers Men's Go Elite 3 Golf Shoe
These shoes are very comfortable and you will not feel them on your feet when you walk and swing. They are also very sturdy with great traction in spite of not having spikes, even on wet terrain.
What's not to like about the Skechers Men's Go Elite 3 Golf Shoe
These shoes are quite narrow, so they may not be the best choice for you if you have very wide feet. Some users complained that these shoes are not durable enough for very regular use, but rather occasional playing.
4. Puma Men's Ignite Pwrsport Golf Shoe
These imported shoes have so much on offer that allow you to enjoy every round of golf to the fullest thanks to the support, comfort, and traction offered by these shoes.
This shoe has a synthetic upper that boasts a low-profile silhouette that is both attractive and highly functional. The TPU saddle gives you excellent lightweight support while the extra-thin PWRFRAME reinforcement can be felt in the high stress spots.
The IGNITE foam inners offer you comfort, stability, and great responsiveness. Heavy-gauge thread holds the textile lining firmly in place for high quality comfort. The padded insole and external heel support also increase comfort.
There are 39 hexagon grips that have been strategically placed to give you traction in all directions while the 24 chevron-shaped nubs give you traction where it is most needed.
The Duoflex lets you move comfortably and naturally, while the breathable, waterproof mesh enhances your performance. The shoes weigh 13 ounces each and will not restrict your movement at all. Plus, the shoes come with a 1-year waterproof warranty.
What's to like about the Puma Men's Ignite Pwrsport Golf Shoe
These shoes are so lightweight that it feels like you are barefoot when wearing them. The grips on the sole are very sturdy and the traction is solid.
What's not to like about the Puma Men's Ignite Pwrsport Golf Shoe
The eyelets for the laces are not as strong and durable as many users hoped. The waterproofing is not very effective and not suitable for wet terrain.
5. Skechers Golf Men's Go Golf Fairway Golf Shoe
If you want golf shoes that will make you feel like you are walking on clouds while providing you with stability and traction, then look no further than this excellent offering from Skechers.
Right out the box, you’ll find that these shoes are strong and lightweight. The water-resistant, breathable polyester upper is soft and comfortable, offering you great water protection. The midsole is made from responsive, lightweight 5GEN cushioning.
The base has over 40 high-grip nubs for increased traction. The outsole is made from a cushiony, high-rebound Goga Matrix that gives you added stability when swinging and support when walking.
Additionally, you can walk on any terrain or surface without a worry. Your feet can easily flex and move in a natural, comfortable way as you walk. Each shoe weighs only 10.55 ounces, making it very lightweight for the long walk on the golf course.
This shoe is available in 9 different color options, including charcoal/blue, white/black, and grey/navy, so you can find a pair that suits your preferences.
What's to like about the Skechers Golf Men's Go Golf Fairway Golf Shoe
These shoes are so comfortable that you won’t even feel them on your feet as you walk. They are also very stable with great traction, even on wetter terrain.
What's not to like about the Skechers Golf Men's Go Golf Fairway Golf Shoe
These shoes run about 1 size smaller than most shoes. Some users complained that these shoes are made more for occasional use rather than regular playing. These shoes are also not waterproof.
When it is time to invest in a pair of golf shoes, you need to know what to look for to make the right decision, especially considering the wide variety of materials, styles, and types of shoes. This guide below will help you when selecting the best pair for you.
Types of Golf Shoe
While there a few different types of golf shoes, there are two main types: spiked/cleated and spikeless.
Spiked or cleated
These are the classic golf shoe and they provide you with a lot of traction, breathability, comfort, water resistance, and style. These shoes are characterized by the spikes found at the bottom of the shoe which give you a lot of grip on the golf course. The spikes are normally metal, but there are a variety of shoes that have hard plastic cleats too.
These shoes have an appearance similar to regular sneakers. They are normally a lot more comfortable and breathable than spiked shoes, but they do not provide as much traction and waterproofing.
These shoes are characterized by the flat soles with rubber nubs, which provide you with support and stability when playing. Because the nubs are made from rubber, you are able to wear these shoes are sneakers as well as golf shoes.
Golf Shoe Materials
Over the past few years, the materials used in golf shoes have improved. You can find golf shoes made from just about every material out there, but these are some of the common materials used:
This is the most popular choice for golf shoes. This type of material holds its shape, providing stability and durability. Leather is very breathable and water resistant. It is a cool material that is ideal for using in the warmer months.
When looking at different waterproof material, most manufacturers choose Gore-Tex, which is thick and water resistant while still being breathable. This material is warmer than leather, so it is ideal for cooler climates or winter golfing.
This is what the cheapest golf shoes are made from. The most common synthetic material is polyester, which is comfortable and quite breathable. These shoes are easy to clean and very affordable, making them a favorite amongst irregular players.
Having spikes at the bottom of your golf shoes gives you more traction and stability. Especially if you have a strong swing, having a firm, strong anchor keeps you in place through your swing. There are two main types of golf spikes: metal and plastic/soft.
These are the traditional type of spikes that have been used for many decades. They have started becoming less popular due to the damage they can do to the golf course.
Plus, when walking on anything other than the grass, these shoes are very uncomfortable. Many golf courses have also started to ban the use of golf shoes with metal spikes.
Plastic or soft
These spikes are becoming ever more popular, and for good reasons. They do not tear up the grass on the course, and they are much more lightweight.
They are more comfortable than metal spikes while still offering the same or better traction. These spikes can easily be replaced when needed.
There are two types of lacing system used for golf shoes: Velcro and traditional.
As golf shoes improve and advance, manufacturers are coming up with faster ways to secure golf shoes that allow for the ultimate custom fitting experience, hence the use of Velcro lacing. This is characterized by the use of Velcro strips that secure the shoe while letting you do each strip independently for a snug, custom fit.
Even though there have been many advancements, laces still remain the most popular choice for fastening golf shoes. They allow you to secure your shoe snuggly and sturdily, promising a good, comfortable fit.
Golf shoes are available in a variety of weights. However, most modern golf shoes are lightweight and comfortable to wear.
Golf shoes range in weight from 7 to 14 ounces in weight each. Ideally, find a pair of golf shoes that feel light on your feet, much like your sneakers. Golf shoes should not weigh you down or make you feel off balance.
How to Choose Golf Shoes
When looking at golf shoes, there are a few things that will influence your choice:
The space between the eyelets at the top should be the width of your thumb (around 5/8 inches). The height of the arch of your foot may affect this slightly, but not by much.
When the shoes are properly fitted, you should be able to wiggle your toes and there must be a ½ inch space between your toes and the front of the golf shoe.
The part between the laces and toe shouldn’t be rippled or bunched. The right fit will mean that the shoe is smooth and flat.
When your foot is bent or flexed, the shoe should bend in the same place as your foot.
Once the laces are tied, your foot should not slip or slide. Your foot should feel snug without feeling too tight.
How to Clean Golf Shoes
Unless your shoe manufacturer has stated that you can machine wash the shoes, never place them in a washing machine or dryer. It is best to clean your golf shoes by hand.
- Remove the insoles and laces
- Clean the upper with warm water and mild soap
- Use a brush to remove dirt
- Clean the outside of the shoe with warm water and mild soap
- Place the shoes in the sun to dry
NEVER soak your shoes in water and use as little water as possible when cleaning your golf shoes.
What are Spikeless Golf Shoes?
Spikeless golf shoes are exactly what their name suggests – golf shoes without spikes. Rather, they have rubber soles with nubs that give you traction and stability.
These shoes have a sneaker-like appearance that you can wear both on and off the golf course, making them a very popular choice for golfers that do not need as much traction due to their swing style or golf course.
How to Waterproof Golf Shoes
Unfortunately, waterproofing is something that is either built into your golf shoes or not. Luckily, there is a quick and easy way to make your golf shoes water resistant. Remove your laces and simply apply a coat or two of Mink Oil, Dubbin, or Nikwax to the outside of your shoes – including the upper.
Leave your shoes for a few minutes and then put the laces back in them. Even if your golf shoes have waterproofing, you should do this for added protection and longevity.
Wearing the right pair of golf shoes ensures that your body is properly supported throughout your swing while also keeping your feet cool and comfortable throughout the very long walk around the course. You always want to ensure that you have purchased the right pair for your needs, so be sure to consult our buying guide and FAQs above.
While all of the options on our list of recommendations are excellent for most golfers, our favorite all-rounder is the Skechers Men's Go Elite 3 Golf Shoe. They are stylish, trendy, and very functional thanks to the rubber soles that give you excellent traction.
These shoes are very lightweight and comfortable, while the foam cushioning is supportive. Plus, the Skechers Go Elite 3 shoes come with a 2-year waterproof warranty.
Don't forget to also read our article on the "Best Spikeless Golf Shoes of 2018 Complete Reviews with Comparison".