Which are better - spikes or spikeless?
Steve Carroll: This one came to me this morning after I almost met my maker at the hands of a slippy, wet, leaf-strewn path and a pair of spikeless shoes.
Let me say at the outset that I love spikeless. I like sticking my golf shoes on in the house, driving to the course and not having to change.
I love that some of them are so casual you can wander around town and not get a second look.
But I also respect anyone brandishing a placard for spikes.
They are perfect in any conditions, but particularly as the weather starts to really turn, and there is no danger that you are going to fall head over heels on an icy surface.
I can’t decide. So I am asking you to be judge and jury. Which are better: spikes or spikeless?
Mark Townsend: Interesting, I won’t name names but one pair of spikeless had me marching on confidently through the leaves yesterday, another had me tottering along gingerly just this morning.
But, given golf isn’t played on a wet, leafy pavement, I would go for spikeless any day of the week. Spiked golf shoes, one or two expensive models aside, don’t look anywhere near as good as most spikeless.
I remember going to an Ecco product launch not very many years ago shortly after Fred Couples had worn his Street shoes at Augusta in maybe 2010.
Now they are pretty much the norm, strange nobody thought of it earlier really…
James Savage: I have a fairly healthy selection of spiked and spikeless shoes on rotation at all times.
It would always be my preference to wear spikeless for comfort and convenience.
Who has time to change their shoes when running from the car to the first tee?
But in soft conditions, I have to wear spiked to stop me from falling over.
I’d much prefer to wear spikeless all year round as the outsoles are easier to clean. By the spring I’ll no doubt have five pairs of shockingly filthy spiked shoes in my boot.
SC: Does the brand make a difference?
JS: There are some spikeless which perform almost as well as spiked. There are others which are just trainers.
Tom Lenton: There must be research now that shows spikeless do less damage to greens than spikes? Metal spikes dig up the greens.
SC: Can you still buy metal spikes?
JS: I think the MIT did some extensive research.
One player jumped up and down on a wet green in spikeless shoes and another in metal spikes. The results were staggering.
Jamie Millar: That’s what I did my dissertation on – the results were inconclusive.
WS: Spikeless for laziness and all round comfort…
However you can’t do better than the high quality all leather golf shoes of yesteryear. They are heavy, you feel grounded, the crunch noise on concrete and that feeling of sinking into summer tarmac can’t be matched.
SC: Is it the Hovis tune I can hear playing?
JS: They still exist William but have been pushed into the background by the trainer-style golf shoes most people crave.
FootJoy Icons and DryJoys Tour have changed little over the years and there are still plenty of takers.
WS: They are not the same as the all leather shoes such as the FootJoy Classic, with the extra long steel cermac spikes.
JS: When the laces are wet and muddy and your hands are cold…Shoes with BOA lacing can make your life better.
MT: It’s odd how some people ‘wear shoes well’ but always think of this pic immediately when someone is crunching over the tarmac in a pair of spikes.
Look at him, he’s incredible. No white belt, baseball cap, advertising or slitted trousers to be seen anywhere.
JS: Wonder what he’d look like in a pair of FJ FreeStyle…
Dan Murphy: I find changing shoes, and especially tying shoelaces, tedious. With a good pair of spikeless shoes in the right conditions, you can put them on first thing, play 18 holes, have your lunch, get in your car, play another 18 holes somewhere else and go for a pint without changing shoes once. That has got to be a good thing.
SC: I’m 39 and I’ve still not mastered tying shoelaces.