Jason Day had a field day at the British Open. However, he was having a controversial shoe day. His choice of footwear caused a stir on social media. He appeared in White High Top Nike shoes which seemed more suited for basketball. The more bizarre issue was his rebuttal where he stated that the shoes were for golfing but for women.
The tweets that followed were less than flattering. They were flooding in via the hashtags #TheOpen and #britishopen.
One fan wondered whether Jason Day was wearing the casual high tops because somebody had stolen his golfing shoes. Another fan sarcastically commented that Jason Day “could take solace in the worst footwear award in the event he loses’. Another likened his overall look to teenagers who attend movies and giggle throughout.
There were admirers equally. One tweeted “[I] Love Jason Day wearing Jordan 1's at the Open”
We cannot however completely disregard Jason’s choice of footwear if not his loyalty to Nike.
The high-tops address amateur athletes’ concerns. The high-top is a fast rising and popular shoe choice that fits the description of both athletic and fashionable. It has become popular of late due to the increasing interest in running and working out among middle class Americans. It panders to the shoppers’ need to feel comfortable, trendy and involved in a healthy lifestyle.
Whether Day was flouting the rules, is a matter up for debate. What is clear is that his choice was untraditional. While some were happy that he was unconventional, many pointed out that his choice of attire clashed with his overall get up thereby chipping away at his intended professional look.
The Royal Birkdale is devoted to strict rules for golfers. Their website states that “Smart attire is essential, golf shoes are to be worn; smart tailored shorts may be worn with knee length socks or short socks; sports shorts and combat/cargo shorts are not permitted.”
Perhaps Jason Day’s choice was more in keeping with the required character of golf shoes instead of the form.
When buying golf shoes, there are several considerations to be made. For instance, one has to consider whether to get spiked on non-spiked shoes. Spiked shoes offer more stability while non-spiked shoes offer more comfort and are light weight. There are also choices of golf boots and golf sandals but these are more suited for adverse golfing conditions.
Other considerations include material. Leather is the most popular material. Some golfers also like their leather golfing shoes to have waterproof lining. Another popular material is called Gore-Tex. It is extremely thick and water resistant. It is good for winter and wet conditions.
Many golfers prefer plastic spikes to metal spikes because they are lightweight and do not ruin a golf course. Plastic spikes are also more comfortable as they are able to bend and flex during walking unlike metal spikes which are stiffer. In addition, many golf courses have started banning metal spikes.
Regardless of the controversies, Jason Day’s shoes are likely to have met the criteria required only that his choice was novel.