Golf Fashion Question: Should You Be Able To Wear Jeans on the Golf Course?

Golf is a game of tradition and rules that are in danger of being changed by the presence of denim on the greens!

Once the sport of the elite, golf is now enjoyed by people across all social classes. But those traditions and rules, set by those who had time and determination to keep the sport “a cut above” the rest of the sporting community,— those traditions die a very slow death. One tradition has to do with the appropriate clothing a golfer should wear while playing the game of golf.

Every club sets its own rules. They are determined by the board of directors, or governors and must be adhered to by those who wish to play the course. It’s not unusual to see a sign at the entrance to a golf clubhouse noting the acceptable dress code. Usually, these rules apply not only to the golf course but to the driving range and the practice putting green. Whether public or private, if you want to play a course you should be familiar with the course rules. If you are unsure, call ahead and check with the pro shop.

Loudmouth Golf Women's Par Threes JeansWhy am I even bringing up the question? Because recently I came across a golf forum which was filled with a lively give and take from golfers across the globe, all commenting on the question. It’s clear that there is an underground movement to move towards denim on the golf course. In fact one manufacturer, an established brand, has just begun selling jeans to play golf. (Pictured here is the Aloha WJ from Loudmouth Golf – their description: Our new Par Threes, styled after the most comfortable jeans, will be your favorite pants ON and OFF the golf course. Dress them up with a nice belt and golf shirt and you’re playing golf at the club in jeans…and the head pro will never know! Dress them down with no belt, cool T-shirt and sneakers and you’re ready to go downtown. (Price at readygolf.com $89.95)

Here is just a sampling of the forum exchange (From both men and women, age 20+ – 60+ I’m keeping the names anonymous to protect the innocent. 🙂

Jean, as a fabric, is not inconsistent with golf. Most jean trousers are styled in a specific fashion which is not appropriate for the course. If the styling of the trousers doesn’t include metal rivets, sewn on pockets and contrasting stitching, then they may be able to make a comfortable pair of jeans worthy of the course. My thought would be to try a white jean in a gabardine style which includes a bit of stretch in the fabric for movement.

Typical blue jeans are not appropriate on the course.
No way…Besides the obvious fact that doing anything athletic in denim is quite difficult and uncomfortable (rodeo cowboys are only on the bull for 8 seconds), golf is a game steeped in tradition. Jeans wouldn’t be accepted I fear.

I have gone to the driving range in jeans a few times, they have absolutely no business on the golf course – and that’s regardless of public, private, resort, or anywhere in between.

No golf course (including public golf courses) should allow people to wear jeans to play!! If they want to wear jeans tell them to take up horse-back riding!

It is a small but ultimate question to everybody who plays golf and runs golf course, isn’t it? Can you be tolerant / open minded when you suddenly find at tee time that your close friend appears in jeans because he / she did not know it was taboo to others…. ??? Do you stop / cancel to play with?

Jeans are actually less offensive to me than players talking on their mobile phones. Golf is not just for the elite.

This last comment about mobile phones on the golf course, begs the question on golf etiquette. But we’ll handle that in a future post.

In the meantime, what do you think about jeans on the golf course? Do you think you should be able to wear those denims while you swing? Comment below, and answer the poll question in the sidebar.

  7 comments for “Golf Fashion Question: Should You Be Able To Wear Jeans on the Golf Course?

  1. Runningbuck
    October 12, 2012 at 8:54 am

    I like jeans and slack and shorts all around, but I don’t wear jeans to play golf because jeans are constricting and slacks are nicer looking. Say what you want about low, middle and upper class and the affordability of clothing. Slacks are just as, if not cheaper than jeans. So do we say it’s a snob thing? Do we say its tradition? I say tradition and a point of having standards, less we want to say the hell with it next thing you know we have sagging pants and boxers showing up on the tee. And trust my freaking son would let his pants sag if it were not for the fact I have a nine iron in my hands. Can we just hold on to this one rule?

    • Pat Mullaly
      October 12, 2012 at 10:15 am

      I agree….love the image of your holding that nine iron and your son trying to “sag” away…. I have nephews who think it’s cool to have the crotch of their pants somewhere below their knees… one of them is going to trip over himself, land on his nose and only then, realize how bizarre low sloppy pants really are. Call me “out of sync” with that fashion statement. 🙂

  2. M Chavez
    September 18, 2011 at 2:23 pm

    I play golf wearing jeans quite regularly and do not have a problem with them. If any of the people that I have played with have a problem with them they have been silent or perhaps they are past the silly notion that jeans should not be warn on the course.
    Comparing jeans to some of the outfits that are considered proper attire (knickers with diamond designs on your socks and vest PLEASE no one alive is that old, shorts that are down to the top of your ankles, dressed like a sunflower or a pink rose(Villegas) or maybe like Will Farrell, Bill Murray th ou in movies that is a lot of joke to your code, so give jeans a break

  3. Guy Peterson
    June 27, 2011 at 6:07 am

    I honestly don’t think it should make a difference. I know poor people who like to play golf and can play better than the guy with Fancy slacks; but yet they feel uncomfortable at a course because people like to make a huge deal about jeans.

  4. December 13, 2010 at 5:59 pm

    Hi, I want to let everyone know about Thunderbolt Softshell Jeans. These jeans are NOT DENIM and they are great for golfing. They are made of Dryskin, a premium outdoor performance fabric from Schoeller of Switzerland, and they are sewn in the USA! We offer them in men’s jeans sizing, and we have some women customers who really like the fit. The current model of Thunderbolt Softshell Jeans is color black with contrast stitching. In the future we plan to offer other colors and same-color stitching. Thanks for checking us out.

    • Pat
      December 14, 2010 at 9:11 am

      Chris, checked out your site… product looks good. If you’d like a product review from a couple of women golfers let me know. We can set something up with a couple of readers and get their feedback, publish it, and backlink to you.

  5. Clarissa
    October 16, 2010 at 6:38 pm

    Awesome post here. I would love to wear jeans on the golf course and much success to the established brand that has begun selling jeans to wear on the golf course. Thats a really good idea and its good fashion ideas like those that can end up making people a lot of money.

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