Though golf gloves are worn by more than 95 percent of PGA Tour players, are they really that big a deal? Bobby Jones never wore a glove. Neither did Ben Hogan, Byron Nelson or Babe Zaharias. And in recent years, players such as Fred Couples have eschewed gloves in favor of the au natural method of gripping a club.
Still, most players feel the thin piece of leather (or combination of multi-material gloves) that stands between them and the club is a vital piece of equipment. And although gloves do not warrant fancy names or much-publicized USGA rulings, there are important keys to pay attention to when it comes to your gloves.
Now is the time of year when golfers find their gloves from last season in various stages of disrepair or decomposition from a winter spent sitting in a golf bag that likely was in the trunk of a car in sub-freezing temperatures a good portion of the time. Even if you hadn't treated your gloves so poorly, fact is, the ones you have left over are likely stretched beyond the point of being a snug fit, rendering it pretty much useless. Though most golfers won’t get rid of a glove unless it’s ripped, you need to toss those gloves out and start new, buying two or three that you can use in a rotation, which will make them last longer.
Another tip on gloves: If you have hands that tend to perspire in warm weather, consider using a rain glove even when the sun is shining. When the hands get sweaty, leather gloves not only get wet with perspiration, but they’re tough to get on and off your hand for those who feel it is tour-pro cool to take your glove off after every shot. You'll see some tour players, like J.B. Holmes, going this route. Rain gloves go on and off easy, get tackier when wet and are far more durable.
Finally, stop pulling on the cuff of the glove near the wrist. That just stretches it. Smooth the glove out with your non-gloved hand instead. After all, if you're going to be in the 95 percent, make sure you're at the top of it.