Welcome to Devil Ball's Proving Ground, where we put the latest golf equipment through its paces. Today we get a chance to look at some of the latest in golf footwear and tell you about what's good for your feet, and what you should be looking to buy in the coming months.
Golf shoes have changed. No longer is it a must to have four-inch spikes digging deep in the turf, and as comfort and style become more of a selling point, the shoe industry has changed to support that. Here are four shoes that have taken that into account.
Travis Mathew London -- If you're into hip golf fashion, you know about Travis Mathew, the product sported most popularly by Bubba Watson, but did you know that lately they've snuck in the golf shoes business? Yep, the London (seen above left) are just one of the two designs they've rolled out to make your round just that much hipper. Much like the Ecco Streets, the London and Steadmen designs are comfortable shoes you can wear straight from the office to the first tee. A must-wear with pants, the Londons are a great shoe to wear for 18 holes and then for a short stint at the 19th hole, since nobody would even notice you were rocking golf shoes. Retail price - $84.95 www.travismathew.com
TRUE Linkswear Tour -- The good thing about having Ryan Moore on as a pitchman is this; he is only rocking stuff he thinks make him better. That's why when he got with TRUE golf shoes, you knew the product must be good. And they are. Really, really good. Yes, they might not look like the traditional golf shoe, but if you want to be comfortable for 18 holes (and longer), get a pair of these.
I wore them, and had friends wear them, and I'm convinced it's the most comfortable golf shoe on the market. It's just up to you if you can get past the distinctive look the Tour shoes give you. I was completely fine with it. Retail price - $159.00 www.truelinkswear.com
Nike Air Range -- Nike has done a great job in recent years of having that tennis shoe look to their golf shoes. Yes, they have the more traditional line, but if you wanted a shoe that didn't look like a golf shoe, Nike was the place to go. And the Air Range is a great example of this.
Comfort, support, and a stylish look make this shoe great with shorts or pants, and even Tiger Woods was seen wearing this exact pair earlier this season as he was transitioning from his old shoe to his new one, and trust me, Tiger isn't wearing anything that isn't absolutely comfortable these days. Retail price - $99.99 www.nikegolf.com
adidas adiSTREET -- Probably the most popular of the new age look, thanks to Justin Rose, these shoes aren't out yet, but they'll be hot when they hit the shelves. I love the simple look of the shoe, and the different color options mean you'll really have to plan out what you want to wear with them, but for a combination of comfort and feel, these are some of my favorites.
We chatted with Rose about the shoes after he won the BMW Championship, and he made a good point -- you hit golf shots for about a minute a round, but you walk six miles each day, so the shoes better be made for that. These are, and while they're still as stable as you need, the STREETS are exactly what the new age golf shoe will look like. Retail price - $90 www.adidasgolf.com