By The Modern Golfer
May 4, 2009
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When’s the last time you changed your golf spikes? Chances are, you’re one of the millions of golfers sporting worn spikes. Not having fresh cleats is like having bald tires on your car — the fancy traction control systems won’t function properly if the tires lack sufficient traction. The same is true for golf, with the player losing grip, stability, balance, and power due to worn spikes. The result is a frustrating golf experience. Keep reading to learn why golf spikes need to be replaced and how many rounds you can play before your current spikes lose their competitive edge.

The problem is very few golfers think about their spikes, let alone change them. They’re so focused on getting new clubs, new shirts, new hats, that they neglect what’s on their feet. That’s unfortunate, because fresh spikes on a sturdy golf shoe will provide a solid foundation on which a better game can be built. Consider some facts to put things in perspective:

  • The average 18-hole round of golf is roughly 5 miles.
  • A golfer can easily walk over 500 miles per year just walking the course.
  • Golf spikes encounter a wide range of terrain, including rocks, grass, dirt, mud, sand, concrete, and water.
  • Golf spikes also contact surfaces such as textured plastic (like the floor of golf carts), metal (such as drainage grates), and other common materials like carpet and tile.
  • Every time a spike encounters friction a small amount of material is worn away.
  • Over time the sharp edges that provide grip are transformed into rounded edges, and the stiff spines become increasingly flexible and lose their ability to retain proper shape.

Imagine the horror of realizing that your decreased performance might be the result of a simple error — not replacing worn spikes! Popular golf shoe manufacturers like Nike, Ecco, Callaway, Adidas, Bite, and Foot Joy utilize spike systems that make changing spikes incredibly easy, most just a simple push-and-turn. Within minutes you can have a firm base that will enable more power to be transferred from the earth to your club, in turn creating longer, more consistent drives. And let’s not forget your short game and iron-play, where balance is crucial and the surface underfoot is often less than ideal.

So how often should you replace your spikes? I suggest changing your spikes every 10-12 rounds, or about every 4 months. That will ensure you get good use out of your current spikes but won’t risk losing performance. It’s a small price to pay considering how much money, time, and effort is poured into clubs, clothes, lessons, and replacing other wear-sensitive equipment such as club grips, gloves, golf balls, and even socks.

Every golfer knows the difference between a great day and a terrible day comes down to details, to the smallest of variables. Well, do yourself a favor and eliminate one more obstacle to a great game — change your worn golf spikes!

PS: using a shoe brush to clean your spikes will help them last longer

Posted in Equipment

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