When it comes to essential golf equipment, golf shoes are probably not near the top of people’s lists. All too frequently, they are seen as a necessary item in order to comply with standards of dress code for golf courses.
According to research by Footjoy, in a study of 4,000 golfers, 70% of them were wearing the wrong size shoes.
But if you think the size of your shoes does not affect your ability to play golf, then Think again…
Why is it important to get the right size golf shoes?
The impact of correctly fitted golf shoes can be game-changing both in comfort and performance. We at Golf Support know what makes a good shoe.
If the golf shoe is too big, then your foot will slide around in the golf shoe. This will cause you to lose traction with the ground. A golf shoe should give you as much contact with the ground as possible in order to generate a smooth, consistent swing. Wearing appropriately sized golf shoes can increase a golfer’s swing force by as much as 21%, resulting in more efficiency and power through the golf shot.
Given that the average golfer walks about 10,000 steps per round, it will also reduce the likelihood of friction, blistering and discomfort of the feet.
The shoes themselves are also likely to last longer. When golf shoes are too big, the leather can bunch causing them to crack, which can then start to let water in during damp conditions. With the correct size golf shoe, there is less movement meaning the durability of the shoe is extended. Over time, this will save you money and prevent you from having to replace your shoes too frequently.
How do you know if your golf shoes are the right size?
Technology has developed now to measure our feet with considerable accuracy and produce shoe sizes for the full range of golfers.
However, if you do not have the time, money or inclination for a formal fitting, there are some quick and easy steps that you can follow to check that your golf shoes are the correct size for your feet.
- Rule of thumb - the opening at the top of the shoes should be about a thumb’s width apart
- Longest toe - there should be about half an inch space between your longest toe and the end of your shoe
- Check the flex point - the break of the shoe should fall in line with the flex of your forefoot
- Listen to your shoes - there should be a ‘whoosh’ sound when your foot goes into your golf shoe
- Take them for a test walk - there should be no excessive movement around your feet when you walk
- Practice your swing - there should be no excess movement in your shoes and they should not feel too loose or too tight when you replicate your golf swing
Getting measured for golf shoes
One option available to you is to book yourself in to be measured for the correct size and this should be done before you buy a pair of golf shoes.
There are some factors to bear in mind before going for a fitting, including:
- Get measured towards the end of the day after your feet have expanded throughout the day
- Take socks along that you would normally wear on the golf course
- Sit down during your fitting with your legs at a 45 degree angle
- Ignore what sizes you have bought in the past - our feet change over time
- Let your feet do the talking and do not be guided by the size on the box
You should ensure that a Brannock device is used to measure your foot length, width and arch length in order to determine the correct golf shoe size for your feet.
If your arch length and heel to toe length differ, it is recommended to take the larger of the two measurements. This is to ensure the ball of your foot is aligned with the flex point of the shoe.
How To Tell If You Are Wearing The Wrong Size Golf Shoes?
Golf shoes should feel comfortable from the moment you start wearing them. They should not need to be ‘broken in’. If this is the case, then you could be part of the 70% of golfers mentioned earlier wearing the wrong size golf shoes.
- Eyelets too close together = shoe is too wide
- Eyelets too far apart = shoe is too narrow
- Excessive bunching = shoe is too wide/too long
- Stretching around the shoe = shoe is too narrow
- Wearing away of the heel and insole = shoe is too big
- Can slip your shoe off without undoing the laces = shoe is too big
If you are in any physical pain, such as blistering or fatigue in your lower back, legs or feet, then there is a strong possibility that your golf shoes are the wrong size for you.
Whether your golf shoes feel too tight or too loose, you should seek to get refitted for a new pair as soon as possible to prevent any further, long-term physical damage to your body. Golf is meant to be a pleasurable experience and there is nothing worse than walking around the golf course in pain when you are trying to enjoy yourself.
What do I do if my feet are different sizes?
According to industry research, 60% of people have two different sized feet so when fitting yourself for new golf shoes, it is highly recommended to measure both feet and have them fitted for the larger foot.
Also, it is perfectly reasonable to expect your shoe size to come up differently across different types of shoes and brands. Golf shoes are not the same as regular shoes so it is important that you go for a specific golf shoe fitting to ensure you select the most appropriate pair for your feet.
Golf Shoe Size Conversion Charts
MEN'S SHOE SIZE CONVERSION CHART
WOMEN'S SHOE SIZE CONVERSION CHART
JUNIOR BOY'S SHOE SIZE CONVERSION CHART
JUNIOR GIRL'S SHOE SIZE CONVERSION CHART
Although fittings for golf shoes have been made considerably easier by technology and companies offering bespoke fittings, show your feet the respect they deserve by making sure you pick a pair that is right for your size feet.
How do you know if you have found the perfect sized pair of shoes? When you walk off the 18th green and realise you never once thought about your feet during the round.
Evidently, size really does matter.