TRUE linkswear TRUE tour – REVIEW

“A Ridiculously Comfortable Golf Shoe”

(Written By: GolfSpy Dave) If you read through the TRUE linkswear website you will run across a number of great quotes about their shoes.  “Slipper with traction” and “…more comfortable than my favorite sneakers” are two of my favorites.  These quotes set the expectation bar pretty high for these shoes.  Today we are taking a look at the 2012 TRUE linkswear tour model.  Can these TRUE tours really achieve the professed level of comfort while maintaining the necessary level of golf functionality?

Style

“If you ever catch me wearing those shoes, kill me.”  That is a direct quote from someone checking out Ryan Moore’s TRUE’s on the range at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro/Am last February.  While I think that his sentiment is way too harsh, it does demonstrate the presence and position that the relatively new TRUE shoes have in the golf marketplace.  Golfers are definitely aware of the TRUE product, whether a golfer likes the TRUE style, or not.

The TRUE tours do not look like traditional golf shoes.  As expected, those who hold the traditions of golf on a lofty pedestal view the TRUE style as a threat to the sanctity of the game of golf.  I’ll admit that that the TRUE style made me think “Clown Shoe” when I first saw them last year.  However, over time, I realized that I really liked the unique style of the TRUE linkswear shoes.  I like that they are different from the other golf shoes out there.  Many people would have a tough time telling traditional shoes apart if the brand logos were removed.  Not so with TRUE linkswear shoes.  The shape and design of the TRUE shoe may just be one that people either like or dislike.

Shape aside; there are some other cool aesthetic elements present in the TRUE tour.  There are excellent color choices available to the consumer, ranging from the conservative to the bold.  I loved the white and green combination when I first saw them.  For me, there was a bit of an emotional attachment as the colors reminded me of my old Adidas Rod Laver tennis shoes that shared the same color arrangement.  Upon closer inspection though, you can see that TRUE has taken the aesthetics of the shoe into consideration for even some of the most minor of details.  Take a look at the photos and you can see green stitching complementing the white body, embossed TRUE logo to the tongue, white spikes amidst the field of green on the bottom, as well as a second set of green colored laces to truly change the look of the shoe.

The style of the TRUE tour may not match your personal taste, but there is no denying that these shoes have style.

Style: 18/20 Points


Fit & Comfort

I have a wide foot.  It is more of a rectangle than a foot.  One of the things that attracted me to the TRUE tours is the fact that they look wide.  For me, the TRUE tours are true to size, although others have said that they go down a half size from normal to get a better fit.  Not necessary for me but your mileage may vary.

With “Fit” comes the concept of comfort.  The expectation of “slipper” type comfort was not far off from the reality.  I always take new shoes to the range a few times before taking them out on the course.  With the TRUE tours, I could tell right away that this would not be necessary.  The material is soft, but the shoe still feels firmly anchored to the foot.  The shoe feels a little thin and harsh when you walk through the parking lot, but as soon as you hit grass, it feels like the shoes disappear from your feet.  AMAZING comfort on the grass.

Fit & Comfort: 20/20 Points


Performance

Super comfortable on grass?  I bet you can see where the performance score is going.  I don’t think that I have ever walked a round in a shoe that is more comfortable than the TRUE tours.  They are so comfortable to wear that there was more than one round where I just drove home in the TRUE tours rather than switching back into my non-golf shoes. Also, although a proper gentleman doesn’t talk about foot sweat, the excellent ventilation in the shoes deserves mention as well.

I found the traction to be excellent in the TRUE tours, both on the grass and also on the artificial mats at the range.  Even on fairly wet and/or long grass, the cleats held me to the ground securely.  One other cool feature of the spike pattern is that they don’t seem to pick up as much junk as traditional soft spikes do.  There was a “sticky mud” incident one morning, but a bit of time dragging the shoe through a puddle/wet grass and the spikes were clean again.

My only real play criticism is the change in weight distribution that is promoted by the shoe.  The design of the TRUE tour really seems to cause a shift in weight for me toward my heels.  So much so that it almost feels like the toes are elevated.  What is happening, according to the TRUE website, is that the design has placed the heel and toes on the same plane, as opposed to traditional golf shoes where the heel is elevated compared to the toes.  Regardless, my feet and weight distribution feel different in the TRUEs compared to traditional golf shoes.

Is this difference a bad thing?  I don’t think so.  I went to the range and played multiple rounds in the TRUE tours without switching back to my old shoes during the process.  My game didn’t seem to suffer from the change in weight and I actually think that driving the ball improved.  My tendency is to go to my toes with the driver and the footprint of the TRUES seems to reduce this inclination.  Overall, I have the feeling that once I become accustomed to playing in the TRUE tours, switching back to a more traditional shoe may feel out of the norm.

Performance: 38/40 Points


Value

The TRUE tours come in at around $150 a pair.  While this is competitive with other shoes that offer the same waterproof performance, the lack of the ability to replace spikes does give me some trepidation about their longevity.  Perhaps this concern is unfounded, but I won’t really know how well the spikes hold up until I have had a chance to wear these for a season or two.  If the spikes do wear well, the value score should actually increase, as you would be able avoid spike replacement costs down the road.  Time will tell.

Value: 17/20 Points


Summary

Are the TRUE tours “ridiculously comfortable”?  I would probably say that they are “amazingly comfortable”.  People who wear TRUE shoes typically become TRUE loyalists, where the initial pair of shoes rapidly becomes multiple pairs.  When I first wore the TRUE tours to the range, the guy in the stall next to me noticed my shoes and asked if it was my first pair.  He was wearing a pair of tours from last year and he told me that he owned six pairs of TRUES and was planning on buying some of the 2012 models.  The TRUE lovers are loyal, and vocal.  Based upon my experiences with the TRUE tours, I foresee the ranks of TRUE lovers growing in 2012.

Total Score: 93/100

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