This Puma Swing GTX golf shoe brings the best of old school design and modern technology into a super hip looking package.
This Swing GTX was a real eye catcher for me the first time I saw it. There’s a retro style and simple elegance to these golf shoes. How Puma can take a white shoe with a couple of green (or black depending on the model) lines and make it look so cool is beyond me. That’s why I’m a golf blogger and not a shoe designer I suppose.
The Swing GTX is super comfortable. With the soft leather in the upper I feel like I’m wearing my cozy slippers rather than a pair of performance golf shoes.
There was no break-in period required before enjoying that comfort level either. I put ’em on and they felt great right out of the box.
Despite being so comfortable with that soft leather, the Swing GTX has a two year waterproof warranty. The leather upper is lined with Gore-Tex.
I’d tell you how great these are in the rain but I can’t bring myself to wear these babies in less than perfect conditions for fear of getting them dirty! They just look so clean and stylish I want to keep them that way. I’m sure if they got a bit muddy they’d wash off fine, but I just like keeping them pristine.
The Puma Swing GTX’s employ some intriguingly wild technology in the soles. Rather than soft spikes, the GTX uses permantely mounted “Smart Quills.” The quills are small plastic tabs which point in all sorts of directions. They look sort of like little gun turrets.
How can a quill be smart you ask? Great question. The quill directions are optimized for traction in the golf swing. Knowing each foot is doing something drastically different in the golf swing, Puma set the quill directions differently for each shoe. In other words the quill pattern is different for the right and left shoes for optimal traction and performance in the golf swing.
UPDATE: What about the left handed golfer?
The quills on the shoes should be configured differently for left handed players, correct? Yes. Puma does make a left and right handed version. The way you tell the difference is the coloring of the soles. If you notice in some of my photos of the GTX, one sole is silver and one black. This is how you tell whether the shoes are “righty” or “lefty.”
Fortunately I’m a “righty” as I’ve heard the lefty versions are a little difficult to find.
On the course
As I mentioned earlier, these Pumas were comfortable right out of the box. No blisters or break-in period like some golf shoes.
I’ve been very surprised by the performance of the quills. I’ve had exceptional traction. I’ve only slipped in a golf swing twice on very wet ground, over several dozen rounds.
I like to walk the course when I golf and these GTX’s are great walking shoes. The soles are not terribly thick, which helps me out with my bad back. Walking in thick or stiff soled shoes causes me a lot of back pain. No such issues with the GTX’s.
Right off the bat I was concerned about the durability of the quills. I was sure the quills would wear off after 3-4 rounds. Puma must have made the quills out of some top secret indestructible material from another planet. I’ve played dozens of rounds wearing the GTX’s and not one quill has worn off yet.
My only critique is with the Puma web site itself. I usually browse equipment sites to get information, check facts and find a place to link to in my reviews. The Puma site has infuriatingly too much Adobe Flash content. I see this all the time. There are so many bells and whistles, animations, things flying around and sound effects but I can’t find the core of what I’m looking for with any ease at all, if it exists.
Clicking on “learn more about the Swing GTX” in their golf section only results in a golf swing sound effect and color changes in the background image. Nothing else happens. I never actually get to learn more. I just get to learn that their site doesn’t work.
I play golf a fair amount with the #1 amateur in my state. This guy has rooms full of gear he has won. He’s the only guy I’ve seen other than myself wearing the Puma Swing GTX’s (he has the black line and I have the green line). He could wear any shoe he wants because he has almost limitless prize money to spend and he chose the Pumas. I can’t say I blame him.
I have more images of the Puma Swing GTX’s in the Hooked On Golf Blog Puma Gallery.