The Nike Air Max 90 G has finally dropped both here in the UK as well as in the US, so here’s my full in-depth review of these legendary sneakers that have been adapted for the golf course.
Style and design
I have to be honest up right up front here – I love the AM90 silhouette. It’s my favourite sneaker of all time and I’ve owned serval pairs. However, I’ve done my very best not to let that cloud my judgement in this review, as while they look great, these golf shoes won’t be for everyone.
Nike have done a great job recreating the classic Air Max 90 silhouette for the golf course. For the vast majority of golfers, you’re not going to be able to tell the difference between these and a regular pair. If you look a little closer, there are some slight differences aside from the new outsole designed which will give you better grip on the golf course compared to a pair of sneakers. The AM90 G seem to fit a little narrower than the regular trainers. Also, the mesh upper has a thin overlay which helps keep the upper waterproof, but also gives the shoe a plasticky look, which might not be for everyone.
Nike initially launched the shoe in three colours; black, white and grey. They’ve since dropped an Infrared colour way which harks back to the original Air Max 90, as well as a somewhat garish NRG version featuring what can only be described as Alien Doodles all over (they were released to celebrate the fact that Golf is the only sport to have been played on the moon). Various reports of social media suggests that there will be several other limited edition colourways dropping this year.
If you want a closer look at the Infrared colour way you can check out my video hereL
How do they fit and feel?
Personally I’m a UK size 9 and have quite a narrow foot. Initially I went true to size with shoes and thought they were just about okay, but certainly if you have a wider foot recommended getting at least half a size up. However I’ve since bought the infrared versions and decided to go half a size up myself and personally I found them to be a much more comfortable fit that way, so I certainly recommend you try them on before you buy them to see how they fit your feet.
In terms of comfort in these shoes are absolutely fine. They’re certainly not the most comfortable shoes I’ve ever worn but equally I wouldn’t necessarily call them uncomfortable. I’m more than happy walking 18 holes on the course in these, but there are certainly some of the golf shoes out on the market. In fact if you’re looking for a pair of Nike sneaker style golf shoes, the Air Max 270 G are far more comfortable.
The signature air bubble in the heel of the shoe is using technology from over 30 years ago and so simply cannot compete with newer technology designed to give a more comfortable ride. The same can be said for the Phylon midsole, which as I say provides enough comfort to walk the course however is not nearly as comfortable as Nikes own react foam.
Well the majority of the upper is a lightweight mesh material, it is covered with a very thin protective layer. While this helps make the upper waterproof it also significantly reduces the breathability of the shoes. The tongue is also made of the same mesh upper although this isn’t covered with the waterproof material and so will allow for some air flow through the shoe in the summer months. However my guess is this shoe will still get quite sweaty on a hot day.
Grip and Performance
Nike have used a brand-new integrated traction system on the outside of the Air Max 90 G. The idea behind the outsole it’s a provide enough grip and traction to be used out on the golf course while also letting you wear the shoes off the golf course without anyone really knowing that you’re wearing a pair of golf shoes. As a result you get a pair of shoes that aren’t best suited to perform the best in either situation. Out on the golf course you certainly have enough grip on dry days, however you could be left a little short when it comes to traction if the conditions are quite wet and slippery. When using the shoes off of the course they are perfectly fine, however as mentioned earlier a regular pair of sneakers will no doubt be more comfortable due to the softer rubber outsole used.
With all that being said I think Nike are perfectly happy with where they have positioned these golf shoes. If you’re looking for a pair of legendary sneakers that you can use on and off of the course then the Nike Air Max 90 G certainly fit the bill. Even if you’re not a golfer and you’re just looking for a waterproof pair of Amax trainers these could certainly be for you.
When it comes to stability out on the golf course, I found that these were absolutely fine but again not necessarily the best performing golf shoes I’ve ever tried. The other materials used are firm enough to give your foot a fairly good amount of support certainly around the ankle and midfoot area, but if you’re the type of golfer that puts a lot of force through their shoes when they swing then you may want to consider a more dedicated pair of golf shoes.