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Talking About Lacrosse Principles and Gear
Spikeless Shoes: A Golf Trend That Is Sticking Around
by Julia Hart
For a long time, the only type of spike you could get on a golf shoe was a long metal one. But in the 1990s, the combination of new technology to design effective plastic cleats and the enthusiasm of greenskeepers who disliked the way traditional spikes marred their greens led to widespread adoption of soft spikes.
Now, 20-some years later, plastic spikes are giving way to... no spikes at all. Spikeless golf shoes have nubs that provide traction without the clunkiness of big plastic cleats.
Increased Popularity of Spikeless Golf Shoes
Many golfers first became aware that spikeless shoes were an option when PGA Tour professional Fred Couples wore a pair to play in the 2010 Masters. The shoes got a lot of attention for their style -- lighter and more comfortable looking than your average golf shoe.
After that, sales of spikeless shoes began to increase. Once responsible for less than 10 percent of all golf shoe sales, by 2013 they accounted for nearly half of all golf shoes sold.
Benefits of Spikeless Golf Shoes
They're lighter weight and more comfortable.
You don't have to change your shoes as often. You can wear your spikeless shoes to drive to the course, play, and then go into the clubhouse for lunch.
Advances in technology mean that shoe manufacturers can better analyze where and how traction is needed and design shoes that have different sized nubs as needed. In fact, spikeless shoes can deliver more traction than spiked shoes in wet conditions because grass doesn't collect in between the spikes.
You never have to swap out worn cleats. Although you may need to purchase shoes more often, with the cost of spikes and the recommendation to change them out every 10 to 15 rounds, you may be pretty even in the costs.
Golfers with arthritis or other knee and ankle conditions may actually benefit from having less grip, because they don't have as much stress on their legs during the swing if there's a little more "give."
They are slightly less expensive. A Golf Datatech survey done in February found that traditional shoes averaged $94.20 per pair, while spikeless were $88.56.
With spikeless shoes seeing such popularity over the past few years, they seem to be more than just a trend. Almost all major golf shoe manufacturers have options that mimic running and minimalist shoes as well as more structured options. Try a pair and see if the comfort and wearability are right for you. To learn more about golf apparel, contact a company like The Golf Guys.