Some golfer’s games are technical by nature and other games are based on feel. I fall into the latter category and that ‘feel’ extends to not only my equipment but my clothing as well. One area that is an afterthought is socks. Golfers make the investment into their shoes and have no problem shelling out $200 or more for a good pair of golf shoes however that’s where the investment ends. Unless you’re Freddy Couples and don’t wear socks, you’re missing out on some quality gear that deserves to go in those new shoes you bought for yourself. Introducing the new version on Kentwool Tour Profile socks for 2011. Many of you know that I reviewed their previous line last year and fell in love with their socks but they weren’t exactly perfect. What kept them from being perfect for me was the fact that the socks seemed to suffer from slippage off the ankle which wasn’t always the best thing. This year Kentwool says that they’ve addressed that issue and is back again, ready to be tested by yours truly. Did they ‘fix the glitch’ or do these continue to fall short of their ‘world’s best golf sock’ claim for me? Check it out.
Did You Know?
The 168-year-old, family-owned American textile innovator reported a nearly 600% year-over-year increase in sales of its premium performance golf socks. This includes more than 100 of the nation’s best golf and country clubs. That, my friends, is a lot of socks!
Key Features, Technology & Functionality
• 61% Wool, 27% Polyester, 10% Nylon, 2% Spandex
• Maximizes foot comfort, increase energy levels and boost on-course performance by combining Innovative, micro-climate system for superior moisture management and wicking, as well as odor control.
• Enhanced cushioning at strategic micro-stress points along the foot result in abrasion-proof comfort
• Heel, toe and bridge elements designed with advanced reinforcement provide maximum support and protection against injury
When you first get your hands on Kentwool socks you immediately notice that these are some of the softest socks you’ll ever feel. They have almost a cashmere feel to them but they’re not, that’s the special blend of merino wool. When you first put them on feels like you’re not even putting your feet into a pair of socks but more like a pair of comfortable slippers. They feel amazing just to walk around in and the best part is that they don’t even look like traditional socks. There’s a certain amount of craftsmanship that you can not only feel but that you can see when they’re on your feet.
You see that there are different areas on the sock each with a job to do. The top of the sock has a thinner, almost mesh-like construction to it which allows your foot to breathe. The bottom is slightly thicker which is where the padding is for your feet (specifically the balls of your feet and the heel) which also provides great support in your arches. Most importantly, at least for me this time, is what the sock is like around the ankle. My typical shoe size is 11.5 US and I tested out the ‘Size L’ Men’s Tour Socks and felt that they ran true to size. In fact with the small amount of spandex in these socks, they seem to mold themselves to your feet for a perfect, almost customized fit. Can your cotton socks do that?
Compared to last year’s version, the ankle area seems to be a little thicker and seems to grip the ankle a little bit better which in theory should prevent that dreaded slippage off the ankle I mentioned earlier. Can you imagine what they’ll feel like in those super expensive golf shoes that you have? Whoa. You almost don’t want to put them into your sweaty shoes because these don’t deserve that. But they want to cool your feet, keep them dry, and give them support so let’s see how these did.
I was able to put these socks through a few full rounds of golf, a few driving range sessions, and some everyday wear to see how they did. Throughout all my testing, I barely noticed I had socks on unless I reminded myself that I was testing socks. Isn’t it a good sign that you forget you’re actually wearing something and that your mind isn’t on being uncomfortable? This is how these socks can claim to ‘reduce fatigue’, by making you feel so comfortable that fatigue or tiredness isn’t going to affect your game. That’s how good they are. Not only that, they also keep your feet dry. Bone dry actually. One would think that wool would keep you too warm like in the winter but the special mix of merino wool, polyester, nylon, and spandex do their thing and keep your feet dry even in the most intense heat and humidity. My feet are some of the sweatiest and stinkiest things you’ll ever see/smell yet here I was marveling at how dry my feet were. Not sure if my feet smelled good but Kentwools are designed to resist odor and since no small animals were hurt during this testing I’m going to say that these succeeded in doing that too.
The main thing I was cognizant of during my testing was ‘where is the sock on my ankle’ and I never found myself pulling the socks up or having to take my shoes off to adjust the height of the socks. Success! I didn’t have any slippage at all and was pleasantly surprised that after a few washes that these socks maintained their shape as well as their fit. Kentwool recommends that you wash their socks inside out and in warm water. For those who like to use the dryer, dry them on ‘tumble dry’ and remove them from the dryer right away. I personally have found that the best results for keeping the socks fit and shape is to just let them air dry as excessive drying can lead to a little shrinking. Definitely not good for the money you’re investing into these. Another way to keep your socks fitting their best is to not yank from the ankle to put your socks on. Gently work them onto your feet and up to the ankle so as not to stretch out the sock. Especially around the ankles!
Kentwool continues to set the bar high for itself and these socks don’t disappoint. Sure they’re a little pricey at $19.95 per pair but if you’re a golfer who likes to walk, has issues with foot fatigue, whose feet sweat and/or stink, or just feel like your feet are dragging at the end of every round then how could you not want to give these a try? Wait, you’re still on the fence about these socks? OK, Kentwool is so sure that you’ll love these socks as much as me that they offer a 30 day money back guarantee. Seriously. If you’re not satisfied for any reason with your purchase of Kentwool socks just return them for a full refund. Not a credit, a full refund. I don’t know of many companies that stand by their product like that do you? Me either. Their socks are available in a wide array of colors ranging from natural (what was tested), black, lime green, blue, purple, and one of my favorites, pink.
Still not convinced? Here’s a ‘who’s who’ of tour pros who wear Kentwool socks:
Bubba Watson, Matt Kuchar, Peter Jacobsen, Charles Warren, Jonathan Byrd, Kyle Thompson, Brandon DeJonge, and Kristy McPherson
Need more proof? Here’s the college programs that have Kentwool socks on the players of tomorrow:
Clemson, Furman, Oklahoma St, University of Houston, University of Illinois, Arizona St, Duke, TCU, USC, University of Florida, and Wake Forest.
If all of these players and schools trust Kentwool to help them feel and play their best, don’t you think you should give them a try too? Trust me, your feet and favorite golf shoes will thank you. For more information on Kentwool you can visit their website at www.kentwool.com.