It's been about three years since I first put on a pair of Sqairz golf shoes.
What drew me to them was the square-style toe, which gave my forefoot more room to spread out and lay flat in the toe box. It was a comfort thing. The squared-off look could be used as an accidental alignment tool, but I have long used the Nicklaus method, so that was a nice-to-have but not pertinent to me.
Then, not too long after the shoes debuted, the company's research revealed they had way more than a comfortable golf shoe. They had a high-performing, high-stability golf shoe that helped golfers hit the ball longer. The wider shoe offered more stability and improved connection with the ground, allowing players to better transfer their weight from lead to trail to lead foot and getting more out of each swing. Further research from Champ Spikes showed golfers hit the ball farther throughout the bag with a spiked shoe.
If a golf shoe can deliver better performance, it has to be on your list when you're shopping for new golf shoes.
Now Sqairz is out with their new model for this year, the Speed Bold. The Speed Bold is a bit of a different look for the New Hampshire-based company, though Sqairz has never embraced the saddle-style classic look -- and I'm glad they haven't. The Sqairz logo runs along both sides of the upper with a color matching the checkered-flag pattern on the heel stabilizer. The Speed Bolds are come with matching shoe laces, so you can lace up with the accent color or the main body color (typically white, though there is a black model with white and gray accents). I like having some shoes with flare (and I already have a white pair of Sqairz), so I went with the lime green.
The performance features of the Speed Bold, though, are otherwise fundamentally the same compared to the Speed.
The translucent outsole features six spike ports (three in the forefoot, three in the heel area), complete with gripping ribs and nubs to augment the spikes. The company offers free spike replacement for life, so it's easy and free to maintain the traction components.
The midsole features a comfortable foam padding that offers give and comfort with each step while not compressing so much that a golfer can lose energy in the transfer of the swing.
Around the collar of the shoe, there's plenty of padding, meaning a golfer will feel comfortable walking in practically any situation on the golf course. The last runs a little wide, so many golfers will want to consider going down a half-size for a tighter fit. You really don't want a loose fit with your golf shoes, so dialing that in is key. The stay-put laces have nubs on them to help prevent having to tie and retie the shoes during a round. The shoes have a waterproof guarantee. My feet have never once gotten wet wearing Sqairz, and that's about as high of a compliment as I can pay to a shoe.
The Speed Bolds are similar in weight to previous models. Sqairz shoes run a bit heavier compared to other companies, and that's in part because there has been so much emphasis at other companies in removing weight -- sometimes to the detriment of stability. Wearing Sqairz, you know they're on your feet, but they don't feel like military boots. They didn't take but nine holes to break in, though they were comfortable right out of the box. I like knowing my feet are connected to the ground instead of feeling like they're floating slightly above it.
What you're getting with Sqairz is a better connection to the ground, and that translates into more confidence going after the ball. I swing aggressively with the driver (really, every club in the bag), and I feel stronger as a golfer when swinging hard with Sqairz. The same is true when I'm trying to reach a par 5 in two or get to a lengthy par 3 with a long iron.
When people spot me wearing Sqairz, I typically get asked if they work. Over the last three years, it's almost always been on a tee box. It usually goes about the same way. I explain the science behind the design and smash a drive. People who might have scoffed at first glance or were skeptical tend to see what I mean once they see them in action.
Maybe at some point in the future, Sqairz will come out with a lighter-weight model. They could introduce a BOA model. But the stability is the selling point with Sqairz. There's a reason they have introduced a new baseball cleat that some 50 Major League Baseball players will wear this year. Stability means performance. That's true in both sports, but Sqairz was born in golf.
The question that I try to answer when I'm wearing golf shoes is really simple: Do they make me a better player? Sqairz do, so I wear them.
The Sqairz Bold shoes are $220, which puts them in a similar price range to performance spiked shoes. They're available in six colorways, including white/black/gray, white/blue, white/red, white/orange, white/lime and black/white/gray. They come with a pair of Sqairz socks, which also feature a squared-off toe and are quite comfy themselves.