Has adidas’ Cracked the Code with its New Budget Golf Shoe?
We Tried It

Has adidas’ Cracked the Code with its New Budget Golf Shoe?

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Has adidas’ Cracked the Code with its New Budget Golf Shoe?

There is a lot of cool gear in the golf equipment world that doesn’t always fit neatly into Most Wanted Tests or Buyer’s Guides. You still want to know how it performs. In our We Tried It series, we put gear to the test and let you know if it works as advertised.

What We Tried:

The adidas S2G. This new spikeless golf shoe aims to fill a gaping void in the golf shoe market with its budget-friendly price point. 

Who Tried It:

Connor. Director of Soft Goods Testing and resident sneakerhead. Do I have enough golf shoes? My wife seems to think so. I can’t seem to convince her that my job is real and that I do indeed have to go to the course to try out new shoes every week. 

The Price is Right

The theme of this review centers around perhaps the most compelling piece of the new adidas S2G: Price.

At just $110, this spikeless shoe hits a price point that’s about half that of the top players. With the adidas TOUR360 24 for $200 and the FootJoy Premiere Series ($200) and Pro/SLX Carbon ($220) also hitting the upper echelon of price, a $110 golf shoe is a rare sight.

But a $110 golf shoe with a full leather upper? That’s nearly unheard of. Seriously, most brands’ “takedown” or “budget” models cut costs with synthetic materials. 

The S2G does the opposite. Where the old S2G was a primarily textile golf shoe, the new 2024 S2G is made of the good stuff: soft, supple leather. 

I’m of the opinion that real materials (leather, nubuck, suede) are missing from the value of golf shoe space. Sure, you can shell out $200 for a full-grain leather FJ, but what about someone who wants the same premium feel without breaking the bank? 

Hopefully, the S2G can help fill that void. But it can’t do so unless it has decent performance.

Enough teasing. Let’s talk about how the new leather S2G fares on the course. 

The Good

Let’s start with the good. Outside of the price and materials (did I mention the leather upper?), I thought the overall fit was good.

The S2G has a fairly wide footbed that did allow my toes to naturally splay. This is more than likely the result of the overall intent of the S2G, which is to be worn both on and off the course. The same width can be seen in the outsole, which makes the shoe pretty darn stable. 

The wider footbed was nice and the underfoot cushion was pretty solid. It’s not crazy plush or soft. Instead, the firmer Lightstrike midsole provided great ground feel and energy return. 

In this regard, the cushion is more like a firm, spring mattress as opposed to a soft, memory foam mattress. While I’m typically a BOOST guy, adidas’ Lightstrike foam is quickly becoming one of my favorite setups. 

The Average

I’ll get this out of the way quickly: the traction on the S2G is nothing more than average. Not great but not bad. This, in my mind, was to be expected. A quick glance at the adiwear outsole indicates the traction wasn’t going to stand up to something more aggressive like the CODECHAOS 22. 

In wet conditions, the traction provided some level of grip. I wasn’t sliding all over the place. Even still, a more aggressive pattern with some sharper edges may have helped. That said, for a shoe that’s billed as more of a casual golf shoe, the traction holds its own.

If you’re only willing to spend $110 on a golf shoe, you shouldn’t expect $200-level traction. And for those of you really concerned about traction, chances are you prefer a spiked shoe. 

The Bad

I only have one real complaint about the S2G and that is the heel. While I normally have no issues wearing brand-new shoes to the course (break in time is overrated), the higher-than-normal heel of the S2G rubbed my ankles raw. 

I chatted with a colleague who ran into the same issue. 

Yes, every foot and ankle shape are different. I’ve got plenty of ankle real estate but this is something I almost never experience. Very rarely does a shoe give me blisters in this way. 

When in doubt, head to a store and try these on before you buy. That’s probably the best advice I can offer. Unless an online store offers a generous return policy, it’s best to try something in person first. 

The S2G is absolutely one that requires an in-person wear test. For some, the heel may not be a problem. But, for others, it may be too uncomfortable to bear.

Give it to me Straight

Is the S2G worth a Benjamin? I think so. I’ve rarely found a shoe at this price point that feels this premium. Did I mention it looks darned cool, too?

For just $110, you’re getting a fully functional, fashionable spikeless shoe with leather upper, flagship cushion and decent traction. 

If you can try these on and find the right fit, I’d absolutely recommend the new S2G. However, if you’re unsure about how the heel might fit you, another $10 or $20 puts you into the conversation for the FJ Fuel or Under Armour Drive Fade

As for me and my sneaker rotation, I’ll just slap on a pair of joggers next time and hope my cankles heal properly. 

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Connor Lindeman

Connor Lindeman

Connor Lindeman

Connor is MyGolfSpy's resident sneakerhead who believes that golf is more enjoyable with a fresh pair of kicks. When he isn't scrolling Twitter to find his next golf shoe purchase, you can find him at the piano or trying a new dessert place with his wife. #Lefty

Connor Lindeman

Connor Lindeman

Connor Lindeman

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Connor Lindeman

Connor Lindeman





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      Gus

      4 months ago

      Bought these after trying on a dozen others. The upper is noticeably more comfortable than others, it felt like a real shoe where others were too stiff. The sole is great too, could use a little more arch support but acceptable (I have high arches but comfort outweighed and only skechers had arches that felt adequate to me). I got some heel rub after walking first 18, none during the second 18 hole round a week later, broke perfectly.

      Huge plus for style points.

      Reply

      Mike

      4 months ago

      Interesting review but what am I missing? The traction is just so-so & they hurt your feet. So why would I buy them?

      Reply

      Trusty Rusty

      4 months ago

      I’m waiting for the first person to say they’ll slip and slide all over the place with those spike-less shoes. I personally have used the adidas “flop shot” model that has the same or similar sole and have never slipped on wet dewy tee boxes.

      Reply

      Mike

      4 months ago

      Okay, I’ll say it, I don’t wear spikeless because the traction is nowhere near as good as my spiked shoes. Nowhere near.

      Reply

      Martin Brown

      4 months ago

      With no wrap-around of the gum-colored outsole, I could see it coming loose pretty quickly. This happened with two pairs of the first-year CodeChaos I had. They fixed it in the 22’s by adding higher and longer wrap-around of the outsole up onto the midsole on the outside of the front of the shoes.

      Reply

      Kenneth Se

      4 months ago

      Does it have arch support? Does it fit similar to an Adidas Gazelle OG?

      Reply

      Connor Lindeman

      4 months ago

      Not a whole lot, but some arch support. I haven’t worn a pair of gazelle’s in years, but would say this fit more wide than a gazelle.

      Reply

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