As the sport of golf has been more and more associated with an athletic endeavor over the past couple of decades, so have the specialty shoes that players are wearing these days that reflect the style, performance and comfort of the sporting life. Hence the current trend of popular golf shoes more resembling tennis or running shoes rather than the ridged dress shoes of yesteryear.
FootJoy has taken this idea to its most technological level yet with the introduction of its Hyperflex golf shoe that has the appearance of a running or athletic show and is being hailed by the company as “the most distinctive footwear category in its history.”
Featuring a very light and cool feel, this golf shoe gives great support for the golf swing yet looks and feels like a running shoe and is very light on the feet. Good traction and styling goes with this shoe’s comfortable feel, but the technology under the hood is what makes it go.
“Our designers have carried out research in civil engineering and construction to create the distinguishing aesthetics of Hyperflex, which are also fundamental to its performance,” said Doug Robinson, Vice President of Design and Development Worldwide for FootJoy. “Every area of this shoe has been carefully considered, incorporating exceptional craftsmanship and innovative componentry to create an incredibly flexible and lightweight, yet stable platform from which to swing.”
The most striking feature of the new Hyperflex golf shoe is the upper. Most athletic shoes are constructed with soft, mesh upper materials that are ideal for running and activities that don’t require a lot of lateral movement. However, for FJ’s research & development team, the key was to keep those comfort qualities in place while also delivering the support, stability and waterproof characteristics re- quired for golf. Through extensive testing, this balance was achieved utilizing an engineered material never before used in golf shoes, called FlexGrid.
The very distinct FlexGrid upper was inspired by the Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Bridge in Boston, Massachusetts. When viewing this type of cable-stayed bridge at different angles, the cables create a grid offering tremendous strength and support, all while maintaining a sleek, lightweight and technical appearance--similar to FlexGrid.
The FlexGrid exoskeleton is strong enough to keep the foot from rolling laterally during the golf swing but also conforms to the foot and allows it to flex.
The base layer that supports the exoskeleton consists of a tight-knit, lightweight, soft, flexible, waterproof mesh, which allows for maximum comfort, breathability, flexibility and airflow. The combined layers produce a golf shoe that wraps the foot in the comfort of an athletic shoe with the additional support of a high-performance golf shoe.
Among the other technological advances in this shoe are the inclusion of FineTunedFoam™ 2.0 that provides exceptional comfort. The next-generation midsole, constructed of a softer and lighter EVA blend, delivers supercharged cushioning. Visible at the rear of the shoe, the Optimized Performance Stabilizer provides support and motion control towards the heel.
On the outside, the Next Evolutionary Outsole, equipped with ‘Tornado’ Cleats by SoftSpikes, has been specifically engineered with thin TPU that provides flexible-yet-durable underfoot traction elements that utilize the FastTwist® insert system.
This shoe is already popular with many Tour players and comes in a variety of styles and colours, including the Boa Lacing System that eliminates shoe laces and tightens with a twist knob.
For more information: www.FootJoy. com/HYPERFLEX
Acompany with an almost 100-year history of producing premium quality headwear has introduced one of the most technologically advanced products into the golf market this summer with the Imperial Headwear Coolcore® collection that features cooling fabrics for those hot rounds this time of year.
Designed to keep the part of the body cool that gets the brunt of the sun’s rays, these new hats by Imperial provide a cooling solution that extends beyond traditional moisture-management fabrics or evaporative cooling technologies that typically rely on chemicals. It’s 100% free of chemicals, polymers, gels, crystals or phase changing materials, ensuring all Coolcore® benefits never wash out or degrade.
Coolcore® fabrics deliver three distinct functions, including moisture wicking, moisture transportation to accelerate drying, and regulated evaporation for a cooling effect. The result is up to 30% lower surface temperatures, drier garments that don’t cling or saturate, healthier chemical-free usage and zero degradation of the cooling effect over time or washing.
Coolcore® fabric formulations have earned the prestigious “Innovative Technology” recognition from the Hohenstein Institute, a first for a U.S. company, and the only company globally to be awarded this recognition for “Cooling Power”.
According to David Shaffer, Director of Marketing at Imperial Headwear, “Cooling fabrics are definitely the next trend in performance fabrics and Imperial is excited to be the first company to bring this industry-leading Coolcore technology to the golf market.,”
Already in leading pro shops throughout the country, the new Imperial Coolcore® collection, consisting of nine headwear styles, over 50 SKU’s, and ranging from caps and visors to small fit and sun protection hats are already getting rave reviews from retailers.
“Imperial’s new cooling technology has the potential to change the headwear business,” said Laura Robinson, Director of Retail at Pinehurst Resort. “The Pinehurst team saw their demonstration and we were all amazed at how this can be incorporated into headwear designs. Imperial impresses me with their innovation in the accessory category.”