Golf etiquette is an important part of the sport and includes using good manners, minding your time at a hole and remaining silent when someone is teeing up. It also extends to what you should wear on the golf course. Because your golf attire can also affect how you play, knowing what to wear golfing is every bit as important as understanding the proper form for your swing. Read on to learn more about proper golfing attire, so you can dress to look, feel and play your best.
General Golfing Attire Etiquette
Expected golf attire does vary from course to course. Some private clubs establish specific rules regarding proper golfing attire, so it's important to check their website or call before your tee time to ensure you select the right golfing outfit. Public courses may lack a set dress code and allow for more casual golf attire. However, there are still some unspoken rules regarding what to wear while golfing.
When you're headed to the driving range or a non-course golf establishment like Top Golf, anything goes, but when you're bound for the course, follow these tips:
What To Wear Golfing
- Shirts: Polo golf shirts with collars are your best bet for shirts. You can find styles with short and long sleeves for comfort from season to season. Ones made from cotton offer breathability, while performance fabrics may help you stay cooler, drier and protected from the sun on the course.
- Shorts or pants: Golf shorts or pants are both acceptable, so you can choose your outfit according to the weather conditions. Look for ones that have mobility features, and don't forget to wear a belt.
- Sweaters: When temperatures drop, most sweater vests and sweaters are acceptable golf attire. Try layering over a polo, so you can shed the outer layer if your body temperature rises.
- Jackets: As long as the weather calls for it, you can add outerwear to your golfing outfit. Raincoats and windbreakers with simple classic designs are proper golf attire. You can also add a clean, sleek pullover with a crewneck or quarter- or half-zip neckline.
- Shoes: Golf shoes with or without spikes are the best option for the course because they provide the traction you need. However, beginners may prefer to wear regular sneakers or athletic shoes, and that's perfectly acceptable golf attire on most courses.
- Accessories: To protect yourself from the sun, don sunglasses and a hat like a baseball cap or bucket hat. Wearing a wristwatch or smartwatch is acceptable and can allow you to track the time without pulling out your phone. In addition, high socks are the norm with pants or shorts.
Can You Golf in Jeans?
A lot of people ask the question, and the answer is generally no. Jeans and jean shorts are not considered proper casual golf attire. In fact, denim jackets, vests and accessories are generally frowned-upon additions to a golfing outfit. Although you may prefer jeans for your everyday outfits, they actually aren't well suited to the course. Denim can restrict your movement and leave you feeling hot during physical activity.
What Not To Wear Golfing
Denim isn't the only no-no when it comes to proper golf attire. You should also avoid wearing:
- T-shirts: Most people don't consider t-shirts to be dressy enough even by casual golf attire standards. If you're completely new to golf and haven't built a wardrobe, you may be able to squeak by with one in a plain solid color, but you should certainly invest in at least one polo.
- Hoodies: When you're going to the driving range or a small municipal course, a hoodie is okay for a golf outfit. Despite how comfortable they are on cold days, hoodies generally aren't proper golf attire for most courses.
What Factors Should I Consider When Dressing for the Golf Course?
When putting together your golf attire, consider all the following:
- Location: As previously mentioned, some courses have rules that define proper golf attire. Check them out before you head to the course to avoid the embarrassment of being told you need to change clothes before you play.
- Your company: Who you'll be golfing with may also impact your choice of golf outfit. If you're playing a round with your boss or a client, you may want to choose dressier pieces over casual golf attire.
- Weather: Being dressed to suit the weather is a part of golf etiquette. Jackets and pullovers may be frowned upon if temperatures are warm and skies are clear. That said, it's fine to take along a raincoat, windbreaker or pullover, so you can quickly adapt your golfing attire if the weather shifts.
- Comfort: Although golf etiquette requires it not to come before the established norms of the game, your comfort also matters when selecting golf attire. When deciding what to wear to play golf, keep your personal preferences in mind. After all, an uncomfortable golfing outfit may pose distractions.