Under Armour have made great strides since they entered the winter golf market six years ago.
The American firm are now established players in the golf scene on both sides of the Atlantic and among the leading innovators in apparel.
The days of bulky rain jackets, sweaters and waterproof trousers are long gone, with Under Armour taking a much more scientific approach – one which is increasingly mirrored by other leading brands.
Under Armour’s new range underlines that development and while the gear looks the part and the technology within it sounds great – garments with a heat retention system developed from infra-red technology used in stealth bombers! – the real test is what happens out on the course.
We think our infra-red technology is the most groundbreaking approach to technology the world of sport has ever seen To get some feedback on what typical golf club members think of the new gear, we assembled two teams – from the Fairhaven and Blackpool North Shore clubs in Lancashire – to play a fourball betterball tournament wearing Under Armour’s lastest apparel.
The prize? A corporate hospitality visit to watch Wales take on South Africa at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.
Both teams were given a complete set of Under Armour garments – from underwear and socks to compression tops and waterproof jackets, to combat typically cool and damp British autumn conditions.
The majority of the gear tested came from Under Armour’s Coldgear range, which has been specifically designed to offer maximum warmth, breathability and comfort to golfers of all standards.
“We truly believe that six years ago we re-invented winter golf,” says Under Armour’s brand manager in the United Kingdom, Richard Palmer-Jones.
“We let players look and feel like a golfer for 12 months a year, as opposed to suddenly de-regulating what they wear when it comes to winter.
“We have a true layering system, and people today are wearing everything from underpants upwards, so we’re going right to the very extremes of layering.
“We think our infra-red technology is the most groundbreaking approach to technology the world of sport has ever seen. You can make anyone warm, but if you overheat then it will detract from the performance, so you have to be able to make them warm but make them comfortable at the same time.”
“I wasn’t aware that golf clothing could be so innovative until today,” said Andrew Richardson, head professional at Blackpool North Shore.
Opposing captain, Fairhaven’s head professional Andrew Lancaster, was equally impressed with the UA kit.
“The trousers are very comfortable. They move with the body, they are easy-care, easy to wash and there’s no need to iron them. They just fall back into shape,” he said.
Each team member gives their verdict on the Under Armour gear below after its comprehensive try-out in the wind and chill of a late autumn afternoon in Fairhaven.
All of which leaves just one question: who won? An emphatic away victory sent Blackpool North Shore to Cardiff to watch South Africa beat Wales in a fast-paced international in, appropriately, freezing conditions!
Could the golf ball be rolled back for everyone?