Do You Really Need Golf Shoes to Play a Round of Golf?
Written by Mike Noblin

Mike has been involved with sports for over 30 years. He's been an avid golfer for more than 10 years and is obsessed with watching the Golf Channel and taking notes on a daily basis. He also holds a degree in Sports Psychology.

Updated on January 24, 2024

In a sport like golf, having the proper equipment can make all the difference in the world.

I’ll never forget how much my first pair of golf shoes helped my golf swing. I felt I could turn my back foot much easier with golf shoes than with regular street shoes.

All of that being said, a lot of folks may wonder if golf shoes are really a necessity to play golf or simply a matter of personal preference.

In this article, we’ll investigate whether or not golf shoes are needed to play a solid round of golf. We’ll also provide a few golf shoe choices to consider.

 

Do Golf Courses Require You to Wear Golf Shoes?

Surprisingly, most golf courses recommend golf shoes, but they don’t require them. Keep in mind, though, that some courses are more strict with their dress codes. In other words, at least have a pair of shoes on instead of some casual flip-flops when you arrive for your round.

If you do choose to wear golf shoes, remember that most golf courses have now outlawed metal spikes to cut down on turf damage. Because of this, it’s a good idea to buy spikeless golf shoes or at least ones with plastic spikes.

 

Do Golf Shoes Really Make a Difference?

Yes, golf shoes can make a huge difference in your overall game and help you shoot lower scores! Let’s briefly go over some of the benefits that proper golf footwear provides.

1. Better Traction and Stability

The golf swing is a complex athletic maneuver with lots of moving parts. Golf shoes, especially those with spikes, provide golfers with a solid foundation and better grip. This helps golfers complete a full turn off their back foot without slipping and sliding.

The spikes also allow for better traction, which is incredibly important on the golf course in wet conditions. More traction means more distance off the tee!

2. Injury Prevention

The right types of golf shoes can also prevent ankle and heel injuries. Golfers with a history of ankle problems can choose high-top golf shoes for added support and protection.

If you prefer walking your entire round instead of riding in a golf cart, the right pair of golf shoes can prevent blisters thanks to their extra padding. Nothing can derail a low-scoring round faster than a bad blister!

3. Most Golf Shoes Are Waterproof

This is another essential benefit of golf shoes. Have you ever noticed how regular tennis shoes get weighed down on rainy days? That’s the last thing you need when trying to hit good shots on the golf course!

Thankfully, most golf shoes have a high level of water resistance. This is a huge help when those uninvited popup showers hit.

4. Golf Shoes Are Usually More Lightweight

A full 18-hole round of golf can take four or five hours on a busy weekend. That’s a long time to be on your feet, so golfers need types of shoes that are lightweight.

Most golf shoes are much lighter than regular street shoes, which is a huge advantage during longer rounds.

 

Can You Play Golf with Regular Sneakers?

Yes, even with all the added benefits of golf shoes, some folks prefer to play golf in regular sneakers. This is perfectly acceptable and not against any type of attire rules at most golf courses.

Some beginners and even some professional golfers prefer the classic comfort that regular sneakers provide. However, golf shoe manufacturers now offer so many spikeless designs that most folks can find a new pair of golf shoes that feel just like regular sneakers.

 

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Mike Noblin

Mike has been involved with sports for over 30 years. He's been an avid golfer for more than 10 years and is obsessed with watching the Golf Channel and taking notes on a daily basis. He also holds a degree in Sports Psychology.