Great golf shorts are essential when you hit the golf course in warm weather, whether you’re a once a month golfer or a weekly player. As you’re well aware, golf attire is an important aspect to this game; many country clubs or even public courses won’t allow you to play in a pair of cargo shorts. I’m a huge fan of golf shorts, as they’re much more comfortable and breathable over a long round of golf than a standard pair of khakis or something similar.
We’ve compiled a list of our top 9 golf shorts that will have you ready to hit the links in comfort, no matter how hot the day is; check out our results below!
Table of Contents
Best Golf Shorts in 2020: Our Results
Best Golf Shorts Overall: Nike Men’s Core Flex Shorts
These were a really easy pick for the best golf shorts overall, and frankly I’ve got 3 or 4 pairs of these exact shorts in my drawer. They’re that good. It goes without saying that Nike is an absolute powerhouse in sportswear, and we’re huge fans of their golf clothing, particularly the Core Flex shorts. The Core Flex shorts tick every box for a golfer; they have a stretchy material that has a little give in the waistband, helping you feel unrestricted throughout your swing. The material is also sweat wicking, and features Nike’s Dri-Fit technology helping keep you dry on those hot days.
The Nike Core Flex shorts are durable, and inexpensive; they come in several different colors so you can grab a few pairs without them looking all the same. These look good, feel good, and are excellent golf shorts overall. If you want an easy buy, this is a no brainer.
These adidas golf shorts are a very close runner up for us as the best golf shorts. The adidas Golf Ultimate 365 Short is a highly functional option that comes in dozens of colors, and is definitely made with the daily golfer in mind. These shorts are about 1-2″ longer than other pairs on our list, making them a great option for the taller golfer. These shorts have a unique shirt gripper around the waistband; the adidas logo is printed in a silicon grip tape helping your shirt stay tucked in throughout your round, which we found to work really well on the course. The Ultimate 365’s are water resistant, and have a slightly stretchier fabric around the waistband allowing for easy mobility and range of motion while you’re walking and swinging the club. These shorts also feature UPF 50+ protection from the sun, and actively work to keep you as cool as possible on the golf course.
These are a highly customizable, very comfortable option for golf shorts. If you want a high quality pair of golf shorts, these do the job very well.
Under Armour has a strong reputation in the sportswear industry, and we think their golf clothes are no exception. The Under Armour Showdown Tapered golf shorts are slightly more form fitting, and don’t allow as much breathing room down toward your knees. The material of these shorts is a bit softer due to the cotton/polyester and elastane blend, but still allows for plenty of stretch. The softer material makes these shorts supremely comfortable, and they still perform; you’ll have plenty of mobility and they’re very lightweight. Like others on this list, the fabric is moisture wicking and designed to keep you cooler on those hot summer days.
The tapered look and feel of these make these a good option for anyone who wants a slightly more form fitting short. They’re not tight, but they don’t allow for as much room around the knee. These are another solid option to bring to the course for your summer rounds.
Oakley has a much smaller footprint in the golf space than some other brands on this list, but frankly they still have a good footing in the golf apparel industry. Most famously Bubba Watson has been been wearing their golf clothing for a long time, and these Icon Chino golf shorts are an easy addition for anyone’s golf wardrobe. These are a no frills option, made mostly with Cotton (98%) with 2% spandex. If you’re looking for an option that you can wear easily on and off the course, these are a great pick.
FootJoy is easily one of the most recognizable brands in golf, and are well know for making high quality golf apparel, golf shoes and golf gloves. These are our pick for a more premium pair of golf shorts; these are the most expensive pair on our list, and the material quality backs the price up very well. These shorts are exceptionally comfortable, made with a polyester spandex blend. You’ll find a comfortable fit, stretchy material and flexible waistband with these shorts all allowing for excellent mobility while you’re out on the course. These shorts are also shrink and wrinkle resistant, making them an easy to care for pick. If you want a pair of golf shorts built to last, we love this option.
These Puma Weekender 101 Shorts remind me of board shorts in a way, and are versatile enough that you can wear them in many settings. These golf shorts are easy to sport on and off the golf course, and look good in virtually any setting. They’re made in 7 different colors, and feature that same feel you need to have great golf shorts: they feature the important stretchy waistband with a silicon shirt grabber, and mesh pockets to keep you extra cool. These are quick drying and moisture wicking, and are highly functional for any golfer.
If you want a good bang for buck option, these Amazon Essentials golf shorts are inexpensive and get the job done well. These golf shorts feature less stretch than others on the list, and instead are made to have a more roomy fit that allows for mobility instead. The fabric is still moisture wicking, and has that performance/sport feel when you wear them. If you want a simple and cheap option, these are a go to pick for the weekend golfer.
These are another classic and versatile option from Under Armour, and the Men’s Tech golf shorts are more of a classic option than the tapered version we reviewed above. These shorts have a 10″ inseam, and are made purely from polyester. Much of the same technology is deployed into these shorts as the tapered version, so these are best suited for anyone looking for a classic fit. There are 4 different color options to choose from for the Men’s Tech golf shorts, and they are priced in-line with many other options we’ve seen.
Buying Criteria: How to Choose the Best Golf Shorts
Golf shorts are just that; they’re made for golf. A lot of this choice will come down to you, and your preference on brand and material. Make sure you know exactly what you’re looking for and how you evaluate your options before you grab your next pair!
Here are our top criteria below:
Of course, price is the driving factor behind most purchases, especially in the expensive world of golf. Golf clothing in general is usually a “you get what you pay for” transaction, so the more expensive options will usually yield higher quality and last longer. I’m usually wary of excessively cheap golf shorts, as they usually don’t last more than 1 or 2 seasons.
The material your golf shorts are made of will have a big impact on comfort and overall feel. Many of the performance shorts we’ve reviewed are made with some sort of polyester blend, which is usually more durable and built to last. Cotton is generally a little thicker and heavier, but has a little more give in it. It’s good to know whether you like the general feel of polyester or something a little heavier. As a fair weather golfer, it’s also a good idea to go for the moisture wicking or fast drying material that helps out on the “sweat front”.
For me, Breathability is an absolute top priority for good golf shorts. Most of the time an average player plays golf, they’re doing so in “prime time weather”, where you’re bound to sweat, a lot. Generally, thinner fabric will be more breathable and lighter, making your round a little bit easier. Many brands have also started to integrate mesh into their pockets for added breathability. If you’re a fair weather player (you probably are), this is an important factor.
When you’re golfing, you need a pair of golf shorts that have a little give in the waist and a little flex in the material. Even though golf attire is formal, a golf swing is a pretty athletic move and you need optimal mobility for every shot. Luckily, nearly every pair we evaluated offered some sort of stretch or forgiveness in the material. That said, don’t buy golf shorts that don’t allow a little flex in them. It won’t be a comfortable situation.
Pockets and Features
Every pair of golf shorts will feature pockets, but the deeper the better. As I mentioned above, mesh pockets are a definite bonus, and really do make a difference in keeping you a little cooler on the golf course. As far as features go, a few of the shorts we reviewed had silicone lining right around the waistband that keeps your shirt tucked in better. If you tuck in, you know that’s a big plus. Other features that you may want to consider include UPF protection from the sun, and again the moisture wicking material that keeps you dry.
Luckily, you can usually judge the length of shorts by the pictures included in the advertising material. This is another personal choice, and it will come down to where you want the shorts to end; either at the knee or below it. Having a general idea of the inseam you like will help you make your decision faster.
A good pair of golf shorts should last you several seasons and help you look and feel great out on the golf course. If you want an easy go-to option, our top pick of the bunch are the Nike Core Flex Golf Shorts; we love the fit, fabric and breathability this pair brings to the table, plus they’re highly customizable so you can grab a few pairs! As you decide on your golf shorts, make sure you consider the key factors: price, material and stretch being our biggest criteria.
Good luck with the new golf shorts, and thanks for reading!