The sport of golf can be quite gear dependent.
The right gear and equipment can tremendously improve your performance in the game. Obviously, the most important equipment for a golfer is his or her clubs. But did you know that your golf shoes can make a difference as well?
While golfing, you need to look like a golfer to be a golfer. And part of looking like a golfer lies with your footwear. Many newbies wonder why they should buy a pair of golf shoes considering the nature of the sport. Well, believe it or not, golf shoes can, in fact, help you make those good shots.
For this article, we will be highlighting the importance of golf shoes. Plus, we’ll review a pair of Oakley golf shoes.
Importance of Golf Shoes
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So why should you consider a good pair of golf shoes? Here are some of the top reasons why:
- Balance – Golf shoes are different from athletic shoes because they have a broader shoe base and larger soles. Most of the actions you perform while golfing are made while standing still so it’s important your footwear has a larger shoe base for maintaining good balance. Other types of athletic shoes simply don’t have that broad base since many other sports require a quick or sustained foot motion.
- Stability – If you try swinging using your bare feet, you’ll find that there’s more foot action than you might have expected. Because of this, you need more stability during swings which can be provided by a good pair of golf shoes. Many golf shoes feature built-in stabilizers to help keep the feet from sliding or shifting. There are also pairs with spikes for keeping the feet stabilized on a wet or uneven terrain.
- Comfort – If you play an 18 hole and walk the whole course, you will have covered a distance of four to six miles. Since you will be walking long distances, you need to wear the right type of shoes that will provide optimal comfort. The most comfortable pairs will allow your foot to breath and provide superior cushion.
- Injury Prevention – A golf swing puts tremendous stress on your knees and ankles. A good pair of shoes will provide proper grip into the dirt. Without the right grip, you can literally swing right out of your shoes. The stress is further amplified with regular shoes because your joints will be more prone to sliding back and forth. Wear the proper golf footwear to prevent common golf injuries.
- Flexibility – While playing, expect to play on irregular and hilly ground, so a pair with the right suppleness can be rather handy. Because sometimes the player must take a swing on an awkward slope, you need all the flexibility that you can get from your golf shoes.
Oakley Golf Shoes Review – The Oakley Men’s Carbon Pro 2 Golf Shoe
Oakley is known for the excellent line of eyewear but did you know that the company makes golf shoes too? Well, now that you know, we’re going to review the company’s most premium golf shoe, the Carbon Pro 2.
- specs & features
- first impressions
- fit & feel
- rain performance
- Weight: 2.75 pounds
- Dimensions: 10 x 5.2 x 16.5 inches
- Premium Waterproof Full Grain Leather
- Synthetic sole
- Sleek golf shoe featuring CoreFlex technology and padded tongue and collar
- Waterproof 1.35mm full-grain leather
Oakley is known for their stylish line of sunglasses. With that said, it’s clear that Oakley’s design philosophy has translated well into the realm of footwear – the Oakley Carbon Pro 2 Golf Shoes is a solid proof of that.
That’s right, the Carbon Pro 2 is a good looking pair, and it’s stylish enough that you won’t be embarrassed to be seen in it. There’s the iconic Oakley logo which looks great and is accompanied with some really beautiful stitching. I won’t say that it’s the best looking pair I’ve had but it can certainly compete with the best of them in terms of looks.
As I feel the pair in my hands, I am given the impression that it’s a well-constructed pair. It feels solid and none of those flimsiness that you can feel with cheap knockoffs. The uppers are made from full-grain leather so you can trust that this is a pair that’s made to last. The midsoles are made from compression-molded EVA which provides good cushion and support while keeping things lightweight.
Overall, my first impression is rather good.
When buying a pair of golf shoes, the first fit is always the most important. What kind of golfer would want to wear a pair that doesn’t feel good on their feet?
Fortunately, the Carbon Pro 2 feels good right out of the box.
At 9.5 (U.S), the Carbon Pro 2 provides a nice, comfortable fit and even provides sufficient room in the toe box. Any other pair of golf shoes will have you break them in before you can finally get a good fit and comfort. The uppers of the Carbon Pro 2 is quite thin at 1.35 millimeters but Oakley has managed to keep the plushness of the material while keeping the pair light.
The pair features the “Octo-Stick” liner which is basically a silicon-coated insert that helps in keeping the foot in place while you walk. This greatly reduces the friction while walking which can lead to nasty blisters.
The tongue of the Carbon Pro 2 is made from a rubber-like material which is also lightweight but somehow more stable and softer than other materials like leather. This material also reduces the chance of wrinkling in the tongue and enables it to sit flatter while the shoe is tied. This adds another element of stability to the pair.
The grooves on the outsole aero referred to as the “Coreflex.” It sounds gimmicky but it certainly made the pair more responsive and comfortable, especially when I’m walking across the course. If you like playing 18 or 36 holes, this might just be the pair for you.
You can tell that a footwear is top-notch is if it feels like you are not wearing anything.
If you are not comfortable with your pair, you will constantly fidget or worry about the position of your feet. Or if your pair doesn’t have enough traction, you’ll constantly be on the lookout for the debris and terrain. Basically, an uncomfortable pair will just waste your energy while you’re on the course.
During our tests, one of the first things I’ve noticed about the Carbon Pro 2 is its stability. During full shots, you can definitely feel that good stability and the resistance to rolling and twisting. Even when using longer clubs, it doesn’t feel like I am going to slip which is quite common with most golf shoes.
This stability can be attributed to the spikes and traction that are found on the outsole. In addition, the Carbon Pro 2 did a great job of securing the midsection of my feet. This adds another level of stability during swings. It really feels that the stability of the footwear is inside and out. The fit is so on-point that there’s little to no movement inside the shoe.
The ultimate test for a golfing shoe is when you’re playing an 18 hole in a downpour.
To test just how tough the Carbon Pro 2 is, we tested it while raining. As mentioned, the pair is made from full-grain leather which is waterproof. After the game, I am pleased to report that the Carbon Pro 2 has managed to hold up pretty well. While the only dry part of the shoe is the insides, the shoes displayed no worse for the wear.
This is because the Carbon Pro 2’s upper and the outsole is protected with a stain-proof plastic. The material also prevents the mud and other debris from getting caught in the crevices of the shoe. Cleanup is about as easy as wiping off the dirt and mud.
Overall, the Carbon Pro 2 displayed impressive performance despite the rainy conditions.
Oakley is known for their premium eyewear that comes at premium prices as well.
This is where the Carbon Pro 2 fell sideways. This Oakley pair is available for about $200. This is just simply too expensive for a pair of golf shoes. For comparison, the Callaway Men’s Balboa Vent Golf Shoe can be yours for about $50 and the Adidas Men’s Tech Response 4.0WD Golf Cleated is priced at $45.
While the price can be very expensive for many people, you have to keep in mind that this is a premium pair. This pair was actually designed for two-time Masters winner Bubba Watson which is the current leader in clubhead speed.
In terms of aesthetics and performance, the Carbon Pro 2 has definitely knocked it out of the park. The pair suffers a bit in terms of price but I can say that the high price tag is warranted.
Below, we have summarized the good and bad about the Carbon Pro 2.
- Good looking pair of golf shoes
- Excellent stability
- Waterproof full-grain leather upper
- Good traction
- Good cushion
- Holds up well in the rain
- Feels good right out of the box
- inimal movement inside the shoe
- Price can be quite expensive
Other Pairs to Consider
The Carbon Pro 2 is an excellent pair but should you decide that it’s not the pair for you, we have other recommendations that should be worth checking out.
Callaway Men’s Balboa Vent Golf Shoe
The Callaway Men’s Balboa Vent Golf Shoe is a very popular footwear that is perfect for those who are looking to get their very first golfing pair.
The Balboa Vent Golf Shoe is a spikeless pair but instead has a dura-rubber material. This may concern some people as it may lack the much-needed traction but it’s not the case here. The pair actually offers good traction whether you are on or off the course. The rubber outsole also allows flexible and lightweight performance.
The comfortable EVA mid-sole gives the pair a responsive and cushioned feel. We didn’t need to break in this shoe which means that it’s comfortable right from the get-go. The overall fit is wider around the toe box so it tends to be quite snug in the heel. Plus, the price is excellent as well.
Adidas Powerband Boa Boost Golf Shoes
The Adidas Powerband Boa Boost Golf Shoes is definitely a worthy addition to the Powerband line which has been around since 2007.
Compared to the previous Powerband models, these Boost golf shoes look a lot chunkier with a deeper heel section. The boost material provides the pair with excellent cushioning plus top-notch energy return which always comes in handy when you’re in the course.
The Boost system might just be one of the most comfortable sole systems that is found in golf shoes. The Boost system feels like you’re bouncing along as you walk. During swings, the shoe also provides good stability.
In our opinion, it’s not the most attractive golf footwear out there but it certainly is up there when it comes to comfort and performance.
Is this the Right Pair of Oakley Golf Shoes for You?
Well, it all depends on your needs and requirements.
The Carbon Pro 2 is an excellent pair that gets most things right when it comes to a good golf footwear. During our tests, we felt that it has managed to provide a high level of comfort and performance. The only downside is the price which can be a deal-breaker for many people.
However, if you care more about quality and performance, and budget is not an issue, this is the pair for you. If possible, I’ll opt for a spikeless model but the Carbon Pro 2 has reinvigorated my love for spiked pairs.