Teacher’s Comments: The best golf shoes for walking. Period.
I now own two pair of Ecco Biom Hybrid golf shoes: the blue and white you see in the photo, and a white and green that was out last year in limited edition.
They are without a doubt the most comfortable golf shoes I have ever worn. I have been able to put in day after day of walking the course, and while my knees and back may occasionally give out, my feet have yet to get tired.
I attribute this to several things. First, the entire Biom line (both golf and otherwise) of shoes is designed to promote a natural walking motion. Biom stands for Biomechanical Optimization, and was inspired, apparently, by Africa’s barefoot runners. The idea is to let the foot flex and move naturally. Ecco’s BIOM shoes are designed low to the ground, and with a flex and torsion that is supposed to allow the foot and legs to fully activate muscles and joints. All of the jargon aside, when I wear these, I feel more energized walking than with any shoes I own (other than the non-golf Ecco Biom shoes I have subsequently ordered).
The shock absorbtion on the shoes is also remarkable. They don’t have that pillow-like feel you might expect with such comfy shoes, but nonetheless manage to keep the heels and balls of my feet from feeling the pounding of an 18 hole, six mile hike day after day.
The shoe’s uppers are made from Yak leather and are treated with Hydromax. This is a process which makes the leather water repellent, and keeps from hardening after getting wet. While the shoes are not, properly speaking, waterproof, I have found that my feet stay dry on even the most dewy morning and on thoroughly soggy fairways. I have not, however, tested them in a driving rain.
The “hybrid” in the shoe’s name refers to the soles, which have a battery of nubs instead of traditional screw-in spikes. Ecco says that they provide more than 800 traction angles. I can attest that I have not had any problems with traction whether on hardpan or on soggy ground. In fact, my feeling is that the “close to the ground” design actually makes me more stable and able to more properly execute a weight shift.
Sizing in the shoes is a bit odd for American golfers. All Ecco shoes are sold in European sizes, with numbers like 43, 43 and 44. There are no half sizes. So, the 43 is the equivalent of a 9/9.5 and and a 44 is a 10/10.5. My suggestion is to start with the higher side of your range.
The one caveat I’ll add to this review is that I replaced the original Ecco laces with elastic Lock Laces I’ve found these to add an extra level of comfort to any shoe. Unlike traditional laces, these flex across the top of the foot as needed, while still holding the foot in place.