For amateur golfers like myself, wearing shorts has never been that big of a deal because the courses I play on don’t have strong dress code policies. This hasn’t been a luxury afforded to the professionals on the PGA TOUR, however, until now.
It was announced on Monday that the PGA TOUR would be relaxing some of their previous rules that prohibited wearing shorts. Rather than forcing players to wear pants at all times, the PGA TOUR will now allow for shorts to be worn during practice rounds and pro-ams but not during live competition in tournaments. This is a similar rule to one implemented by the European Tour in 2016.
The change comes with some rules, however, as you won’t see Jason Day out there wearing a nice pair of Nike athletic shorts any time soon.
The rule states that players can only wear shorts if they are “knee length, tailored, and neat.” The rule also allows for compression leggings to be worn underneath shorts as long as they are a solid color.
— Kevin Kisner (@K_Kisner) February 18, 2019
Tiger Woods has been the main advocate of a change like this dating all the way back to the 1990s and shared his excitement over the breakthrough.
“We play in some of the hottest climates on the planet,” Woods said in 2018. “We usually travel with the sun, and a lot of our events are played in the summer, and then on top of that when we have the winter months here a lot of the guys go down to South Africa and Australia where it’s summer down there.”
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Most players would have liked to see this change happen years ago but as for the timing relative to the season, it couldn’t be better. The PGA TOUR is about to start a swing through Florida at the end of the month that carries them into the summer. Having the option to wear shorts for these practice rounds will be a great sense of relief and comfort for players heading into the tournament.
This is a great start for the PGA TOUR but it seems like it might be a baby step towards the ultimate goal of allowing shorts during events. It will be interesting to see if more restrictions on shorts are lifted as the year goes on but for now, this is a big win for the players.
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