Can You Wear Jeans to Golf?
While many enjoy golf as an inclusive sport, the often unspoken etiquette can bewilder beginners and advanced players alike. Part of golfing etiquette is wearing the appropriate attire, which excludes jeans.
While a disappointment to those who love to sport denim wherever they go, the primary reason behind the ban on jeans is that denim jeans are often too heavy for golf course weather conditions. For example, they might cause you to overheat; their baggy, bulky nature makes it harder for you to swing precisely - and should it rain, jeans absorb water.
Read on to find out the proper dress code for playing golf.
Why Aren’t You Allowed To Wear Jeans on the Golf Course?
Aside from the practical reasons - that wearing jeans is likely to hinder your game - many disapprove of wearing jeans on the golf course due to tradition. While some golfers would say that everyone should have the choice as to whether or not they wear jeans while playing a game with friends, family, or business associates, others believe to do so would be disrespectful.
Why? Because for years, golf has followed a dress code, which is now a part of the tradition. Many golf clubs will also have a specific dress code, so you might be asked to leave the green if you wear jeans or anything else against their particular rules.
Sadly, because golf also has a history of appearing high class, jeans contradict that image. Jeans symbolize working-class attire; they also symbolize counter–culturalism, and while golf is enjoyed by many today, it wasn’t always so accessible.
Golfing attire may be evolving, but it’s doing so slowly. In 2018 Rickie Fowler made headlines when wearing a Hawaiian t-shirt. Some people went so far as to say the shirt was unprofessional.
While you might only play the sport for fun, Rickie Fowler's Hawaiian shirt proves that only some are open to change or casual looks on the golf course. In short, never assume an appropriate dress code, as everyone will have a different relationship with golf. While some might view the symbolism of jeans and the history of golf as two things that don’t have to contradict each other, others believe you should uphold the historical golfing image.
We recommend checking the specific dress code of a golf course before you arrive. That way, you don't have to worry about the club barring you from playing or entering.
Can You Wear Jeans To The Driving Range?
Wearing jeans at a driving range shouldn’t be a problem. For the majority of driving ranges, there’s no dress code. Or if there is, jeans are considered acceptable.
However, the exception to this rule is driving ranges, or practice areas, on private and country clubs might not allow jeans. Each club will be different, but it’s likely that if you aren’t allowed to wear jeans on the green, then you aren’t allowed to anywhere else.
Proper Dress Code to Play Golf
Below are general dress items you should be able to wear on any golfing course - with the caveat to check before you leave for the course.
The dress code for men is relatively simple. And while there might be more flexibility on casual golfing greens, to avoid any difficulties, men should wear:
- Polo shirt
- Shorts, but they can’t be too short or too fitted
- Golf shoes
- Socks should match the rest of the attire
- Golf pants
Men shouldn’t wear:
- Non-collared t-shirts
- Non-baseball caps, e.g., Cowboy hats
- Running shoes
- Cargo shorts
- Sleeveless shirts, e.g., tank tops
- Denim jackets
- Other sportswear
If you don’t have all the necessary items, such as proper golf pants or shoes, don’t panic. You can try alternatives, but investing in the appropriate attire is best to save you from being stressed or rejected from playing.
For women, there’s more flexibility on the golf course, but course owners and players still expect appropriate attire.
Attire deemed appropriate:
- Polo or collared t-shirts - these can be with or without sleeves
- Shorts, capris, or skorts (some courses require golf skirts to be specific minimum lengths, so always check beforehand)
Attire deemed inappropriate:
- Street shoes or flip-flops
- Short shorts or short skirts
- Tight-fitting clothing, e.g., yoga pants or leggings
- Revealing shirts
Frequently Asked Questions
What Should You Not Wear When Golfing?
For both men and women, tight-fitting or revealing clothing is likely to cause a stir on the green. Any attire deemed too casual might also result in your not being admitted. Certain clubs, including private clubs, will likely have rules, so always check these before you arrive.
What Pants Are Appropriate for Golf?
Different golf courses will have unique dress codes, but generally, golf pants are the best solution for men. For women, smart pants like capris are often acceptable. Likewise, shorts or skorts can be worn, but there's typically a rule declaring the minimum length for both men and women.
Need New Golf Pants? Shop Stitch Golf!
Whether you’re an avid jean-lover or prefer a more formal look, jeans aren’t permitted on golfing courses. While they’re welcome at most driving ranges, don't wear them when playing the game or entering private clubs.
So avoid any confusion or stress before your next trip to the green, and discover Stitch Golf’s golf pants today!