- Golf shoes aren’t just for looking the part while playing 18 holes, they also give you enough traction to stay balanced during your swing and are comfortable enough to avoid tiring your legs out.
- To find the best golf shoes, we tested models from Skechers, Adidas, Puma, and others to see which offered the best combination of fit, traction, comfort, and value.
- Our top pick, the Skechers Go Golf Elite 2 golf shoes, give you an incredibly high level of comfort, are made of waterproof leather, and feature grippy spikes and a TPU bottom plate for added traction.
Golf shoes have come a long way in the past few decades. For most of the 20th century, golfers wore what were essentially dress shoes with hard metal spikes molded into the soles. Though you likely have an idea of how uncomfortable they were by reading that sentence alone, golf shoes of old managed to be even more painful and unbearable than you’d imagine.
Thankfully, those days are long in the rearview as today’s golf shoes have undergone a significant transformation. Metal spikes gave way to plastic spikes that aren’t as sharp but have more contact points with the ground. The dress shoe style still exists but golf shoes resembling athletic shoes are preferred by PGA Tour golfers and amateurs alike.
But above all, they’re far more comfortable than their yesteryear counterparts – and they’ve taken design cues from the shoes used by runners. When you consider golfers could be walking the equivalent of almost a 10K road race each time they play 18 holes, borrowing design elements from runners (a much more comfortable shoe) isn’t all that surprising.
Just as the shoes themselves innovated, the number of available shoe styles multiplied in variety. With great variety, however, comes the stresses of making sure you’re buying the right pair suited to your game. To help, we’ve rounded up pairs from brands like Adidas, Puma, Skechers, and others to find the pairs worth buying.
Here are the best golf shoes you can buy:
- Best golf shoes overall: Skechers Go Golf Elite 2 golf shoes
- Best spikeless golf shoes: Ecco Biom Hybrid 2 golf shoes
- Best spiked golf shoes: Adidas Adipure Flex golf shoes
- Best golf shoes for comfort: New Balance Minimus golf shoes
- Best golf shoes for stability: Puma Ignite Pwradapt golf shoes
Updated on 3/6/2020 by Rick Stella: Updated the introduction with more information on the benefits of golf shoes, reformatted the related links section of the article, checked each pick for availability, and updated the prices, links, and formatting.
The best golf shoes overall
The Skechers Go Golf Elite 2 golf shoes provide a high level of performance and support while you golf, and they’re also extremely comfortable.
Regardless of whether you’re walking the golf course or riding in a cart, you’ll be spending plenty of time on your feet. That makes comfort incredibly important in your golf shoes. The Skechers Go Golf Elite 2 spikeless golf shoes nabbed our top spot thanks to being comfortable enough for long days on the greens.
Aside from comfort, the shoes also feature a waterproof and breathable style that makes them great for any weather condition. Skechers designed the Go Golf Elite 2 to have a leather upper segment that’s fused to the sole which provides the waterproofing. This allows them to hold up in the rain but is meant more for those early morning rounds on dewy grass.
The shoe’s midsole provides just the right mix of comfort and support, too, to keep your feet happy as you play all 18 holes. You can buy the Go Golf Elite 2 in multiple color combinations, sizes, and in men’s and women’s designs.
Pros: High level of comfort for a full round of golf, provides strong waterproof capabilities, perfect shoes for those who will walk the course, will give you a nice level of support in the midsole
Cons: Spikeless design doesn’t have quite the traction of a spiked shoe, toe box is a little tight
The best spikeless golf shoes
The Ecco Biom Hybrid 2 golf shoes are comfortable for walking but feature an innovative sole that gives you more traction than most spikeless shoes.
Spikeless golf shoes certainly feel comfortable when you’re walking on the course but traction is a hit and miss proposition with them. Ecco decided to make traction a priority with its various spikeless golf shoes, culminating in the Biom Hybrid 2.
Ecco spent plenty of time designing the sole of its Biom Hybrid 2 golf shoes to help you with traction on the course. This research culminated in the creation of unique Traction Bars which give you the grip you need to have a sturdy swing.
With the recently released Biom Hybrid 2, Ecco extended the Traction Bars around the heel of the shoe to improve the balance of its spikeless shoes even more, slightly tweaking the design of its original Biom.
The redesigned pattern of the spikeless sole on these golf shoes helps you maintain a better level of traction during your swing while allowing you to walk naturally.
You’ll especially appreciate the shoe’s two-piece sole, which creates a mixture of extra firm support for your golf swing on one side and a softer part comfort while walking. The placement of the two parts matches the different movements you make when swinging the golf club versus walking.
The Biom Hybrid 2 has 800 points of contact with the ground, which gives you a high level of traction. Yet, these shoes are comfortable enough to wear away from the course, too.
The upper portion of the shoe consists of a durable yak leather, which is also breathable. Ecco uses Hydromax technology to keep the yak leather pliable and to give it waterproof capabilities.
Pros: Impressive spikeless design of the sole creates hundreds of points of contact with the ground for a smooth swing and extra support for walking, highly comfortable shoe, waterproof leather construction
Cons: Price point is a little high for spikeless shoes, sizes tend to run a little small
The best spiked golf shoes
The high-quality construction and inexpensive price tag of the Adipure Flex spiked golf shoes should put Adidas on your radar for golf gear.
If you feel more comfortable playing golf with a true spiked golf shoe, the Adidas Adipure Flex golf shoes are your best bet, offering an excellent mixture of performance, comfort, and affordability.
These shoes are also waterproof, which is helpful when playing in wet conditions early in the morning or after a rainstorm. If you’re wearing a spiked golf shoe, you’re probably already concerned about keeping your traction in wet conditions, so the waterproof capabilities in these shoes are important.
With seven spikes on the sole of the Adipure Flex, you’ll receive good traction on the green, in the fairway, while driving, and all over the course. Three of the spikes are tightly bunched in the heel area, giving you extra traction for generating power. These shoes perform especially well in cold and wet conditions.
These shoes give you a nice level of comfort, too, as they each feature a sock liner that molds to your foot. Adidas sells the Adipure in several different colorways, making them suitable to match a variety of personal golf styles.
Pros: Great price point for spiked golf shoes, extra grouping of spikes near the heel helps to deliver good traction for power, waterproof design works especially well in cold and rainy weather
Cons: Low handicap players may want more traction in the toe area, arch support could be better
The best golf shoes for comfort
- New Balance
When you walk 18 holes, you’re almost traveling as far as you would in a 10K road race, and the New Balance Minimus shoes deliver in keeping you comfortable the entire time.
If you’ve ever shopped for running gear, you know the name New Balance. This shoe company is popular among runners looking to stay comfortable over long distances. And when you consider the fact a golfer might walk 5 to 6 miles during an 18-hole round of golf, it’s easy to understand the importance of comfort in a golf shoe.
As such, it’s probably a no-brainer to see the New Balance Minimus golf shoes end up on this list as our pick for most comfortable. After all, the company already has proven its ability to create comfortable running shoes that are designed for going the distance in comfort.
The Minimus is a spikeless golf shoe, and New Balance’s designers took advantage of that by creating a flexible sole that further contributes to the comfort of the shoe. The flexible sole means that these shoes don’t require a break-in period.
You can purchase the Minimus golf shoes from New Balance in multiple colors and sizes, and you can select from men’s or women’s shoes.
Pros: Good price point for golf shoes, very comfortable style of golf shoes made for walking the golf course, excellent waterproof capabilities, flexible sole means you don’t need a break-in period
The best golf shoes for stability
Spikes that flex independently inside the sole of the shoe help the Puma Ignite Pwradapt golf shoes conform to any lie you’ll find on the golf course.
When you’re trying to drop that long 4-iron shot onto the 18th green for bragging rights, you know you’ll need a little extra power in your shot. The last thing you want to do is slip or fall slightly off-balance on your downswing because then you’ll end up in the sand trap.
To gain that extra power, you need solid footing and stability throughout your swing. The newly designed Puma Ignite Pwradapt golf shoes use a unique design in the spikes to give you an impressively stable swing.
Each of the seven spikes built into the sole of the Ignite Pwradapt is attached to a disc that can move independently inside its base, matching the angle of the ground each part of your foot is using. Think of these flexible spikes kind of like the rotating heads in an electric shaver that flex up and down to match the contours of your face.
Even though the sole is the highlight, the rest of the shoe features mesh for breathability, as well as some useful waterproofing throughout. Puma didn’t ignore comfort, either, and built this model with the same Ignite foam cushion found in previous models, giving it additional cushioning in the mid-sole.
Additionally, the Ignite Pwradapt shoes provide support in the areas of the shoe where feet typically are under the most stress, making it more comfortable to walk long distances.
Pros: Unique design of the spikes gives you an incredibly solid base, completely waterproof design, extra support and padding in areas where the foot is typically under stress, comfortable shoes
Cons: Can feel the spikes when walking on firm ground, sole may be too flexible for some golfers
Types of golf shoes and their features
Spikes or no spikes? That is the question.
In the 1990s, metal spikes gave way to plastic spikes, and around 2010, spikeless shoes began to appear on the golf course. Choosing between spiked and spikeless golf shoes will be your most important choice when buying golf shoes.
Spikes in modern golf shoes often consist of plastic with five or six prongs per spike. You can replace these plastic spikes once they become worn or lost. A spike will help you maintain traction on the ground in wet weather, in tall grass, on hills, or when you have an odd lie.
Spikeless shoes are the more comfortable type of golf shoes, as they most resemble other types of athletic shoes. Rather than a waffle tread like you might find on a basketball or tennis shoe though, a spikeless shoe has nubs and bumps on the sole of the shoe, creating contact with the ground without being uncomfortable for walking. You can wear a spikeless golf shoe anywhere, as Global Golf explains, which many people like.
A spikeless golf shoe generally offers more comfort than a spiked golf shoe. However, if you want the most traction when swinging a golf club, especially on a power shot, spiked golf shoes outperform spikeless golf shoes.
When shopping for golf shoes, you’ll also want to think about comfort, style, and waterproofing.
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