In case you didn’t know LPGA golfers were notified of an unexpected announcement from the organization in July 2017. It has been reported that there was an email with an outline of new dress code regulations for LPGA golfers. This debatable outline generated a wide range of emotions from the golfers to golf fans alike. While some people scurried to defend the organization’s new dress code, others were puzzled and expressed their confusion.
There are two things you should know about this particular dress code. First off, attractive golfers sell, whether you want to believe that short statement or not. Second, a strict dress code isn’t going to help modernize the sport of professional golf and an old-fashioned approach isn’t going to excite millennials; only middle-age and senior folks.
The golfers have also expressed their mixed emotions towards the dress code last year. Take, for example, Michelle Wie (American golfer of Korean descent). Wie told Golf.com, “The only point I agree with is that there should not be low-cut tops, but I’ve never really seen that be an issue…I think racerbacks look great on women and I think short skirts have been around forever, especially in tennis, and I don’t think it’s hurt that sport at all, considering they play for the same prize money as the men.”
Wie has been one of the major faces of female golf for years, so her opinion is certainly valid. She went on to say: “Our main objective is clear: play good golf. But part of being a woman, and especially a female-athlete, is looking attractive and sporty and fit, and that’s what women’s tennis does so well. Why shouldn’t we? I’ve talked to a few other players and, like me, they don’t agree with it, either.”
Without further ago, here are 15 ridiculous dress code rules LPGA golfers have to follow.
15. No Mini Skirts
It wasn’t clear if Paige Spiranac’s revealing outfits were a reaction to the new dress code, but the LPGA proceeded to ban female golfers from wearing mini skirts on the golf course. As a result, some people—including male golfers—accused the LPGA of body-shaming its female golfers.
While the LPGA feels they have good reasoning behind their thoughts, such as the eventual decrease of scrubs peeking from under mini skirts; the female golfers should be allowed to wear whatever they want. After all, they have the freedom of expression or so they say. Spiranac has been one of the most vocal critics of the LPGA’s dress code and it’s clear her outfits were targeted. She even wrote an entire essay, outlining her problems with the dress code.
14. No Leggings Under Skirts
What’s the point of banning female golfers from wearing leggings under their skirts?
The LPGA has already banned mini skirts, which should’ve been enough in its rather controversial dress code. But we guess the company had a desire to stir up more controversy by not allowing its golfers to wear leggings under their skirts, which are most likely mini skirts. It just doesn’t make any sense.
Most female students in elementary, middle and high schools are allowed to wear skirts if they’re wearing leggings or tights underneath. It’s more of a school look than anything else. If the LPGA banned fishnet tights, that might’ve been understandable. But regular leggings? That’s not risque at all! And they look ever so comfortable. How does it hurt anyone?
13. No Short Shorts
Sure, some LPGA fans have complained about the short shorts worn by the female golfers representing the sport, but there’s nothing wrong with short shorts, especially during the U.S. Women’s Open, which is held every July.
Short shorts are just another clothing item that’s perfect for the summer months when the weather is hot and humid. They’re fun, comfortable and different. Plenty of women are comfortable competing in them. They’re not inappropriate at all.
The LPGA is apparently too sensitive and on a power trip over its female golfers. We mentioned Michelle Wie’s opinion of the dress code and she saw one of her outfits banned from a course in British Columbia, Canada for being inappropriate. Some even mentioned how her putting stance is also suggestive. Really?!
12. Leggings Are Allowed Under Shorts
According to the LPGA, short shorts aren’t allowed. They also have a rule that leggings under skirts aren’t allowed. But shorts are allowed if a female golfer wears leggings underneath them? We can’t figure this stuff out anymore. Talk about a double standard!
There’s no point in the LPGA banning short shorts, but allowing leggings under shorts. Sure, the leggings will cover the female’s bottom, but the look is a little too trendy for the average golfer. There’s one thing to dress up in a fashionable manner and there’s another thing to dress like a mindless teenager who just happens to follow the latest style trends in the fashion magazines. These rules are just getting a little too inconsistent for us to keep track of.
11. Skorts Must Be Long Enough To Cover A Bottom
As you may already know, a skort is a pair of shorts with a flap across the front. Why’s that? Its design gives viewers the appearance of a woman wearing a skirt even though she’s not wearing an actual skirt. Why does this rule not make sense? Well, we’re going to tell you.
A pair of shorts is supposed to cover a female’s bottom, right? So what’s the point of telling the female golfers that their skorts are supposed to cover their bottoms? It’s not like someone can pull up a woman’s skort on the golf course without hurting them down there. The woman is just showing off her legs, not her backside. Leave it alone, LPGA. Clearly, they don’t have an understanding of skorts.
10. Leggings Are Allowed Under Skorts
Skorts must be long enough to cover a female golfer’s bottom, but leggings are allowed under skorts. There’s a contradiction between these two rules in the LPGA’s dress code!
Skorts are already covering a female’s backside, so there’s no need for them to be long enough. Skorts don’t need leggings underneath them because skorts already hide away the upper thighs. It’s time to forget the school girl outfits and rock the contemporary outfits. This is the LPGA, not High School Musical.
All of these contradicting rules are getting a little confusing. We know the NFL has several ridiculous rules in what is allowed in player uniforms and it seems the LPGA is perfectly happy with alienating fans and players with a bunch of arbitrary nonsense.
9. Workout Clothes Aren’t Allowed Inside The Ropes
It doesn’t matter what sizes and colors they come in, the LPGA has already warned its golfers that workout clothes aren’t allowed inside the ropes.
We can understand if a female golfer is wearing a Paige Spiranac inspired outfit like the one in the photo above, but regular workout clothes shouldn’t be an issue inside the ropes. It’s perfectly normal for an athlete to warm up, stretch and practice in their training shirts, training shorts and even yoga pants, so why aren’t female golfers allowed to wear their workout gear to the ropes? This is such a thought-provoking question.
Spiranac had a ton of great jabs against the dress code, one of which said: “If professionalism in golf equals athleticism, then athleticism should be promoted and showcased, and that means allowing the clothes that promote it.”
8. Jeans Aren’t Allowed Inside The Ropes Either
Jeans are a little too casual for the average female golfer. That seems to be the reason why the LPGA issued a more conservative dress code for its golfers.
It doesn’t matter what color the jeans are, the golfers are still not allowed to wear them inside the ropes. We believe the LPGA is taking things too far because the talented ladies deserve to feel comfortable in whatever they’re wearing as they take a swing at golf.
Also, it would technically be wrong if a golfer wore a pair of jeggings. Nevertheless, isn’t it about time golf loosened the rules on this a little? The sport’s been perceived as being elitist, and jeans are the every-day person’s usual choice for wear. Wouldn’t it be a good message that golf is a game for everyone?
7. Joggers Aren’t Allowed At All
There are joggers who jog and there there are joggers in the sports section in your local sporting goods store.
The LPGA doesn’t approve of the latter form of joggers, regardless of a golfer’s age and height. While we don’t know their reasoning behind this silly rule, we know that they apparently don’t want its golfers to be comfortable when they practice and/or compete. Joggers are perfectly fine as they’re made out of a stretchy fabric and elasticated at the waist and ankles.
Women in golf have constantly been held to a different standard than male counterparts. In her article for Fortune, Spiranac also pointed out that about a hundred years ago, female golfers were discouraged from driving a ball more than 80 yards because the form required to do so didn’t exhibit a proper looking female. Wow, what a crazy world the early 1900s were.
6. Plunging Necklines Aren’t Allowed
As stated by Golf.com, plunging necklines are NOT allowed.
We respect and understand the LPGA’s reasoning behind this controversial rule, but to tell you the truth, will there be an official on site with a measuring tape in hand to confirm what a plunge is or is not? If not, then it’s sort of hard to measure the degree of a plunge with your set of eyes.
In addition, it’s ridiculous how female golfers will be fined $1,000 if they break such rules. As you can tell, many female golfers didn’t like being told what would be considered acceptable or not. While some didn’t care, as their usual attire already falls in line with what the LPGA tolerates, this is another rule that feels incredibly arbitrary.
5. Racerbacks Are Only Allowed If There’s A Collar
Racerbacks are supposed to bring the next level of sport performance, but the LPGA only allows its golfers to wear racerbacks if there’s a collar attached to it.
Racerbacks are a go-to option for LGPA golfers because they allow them to experience freedom of movement with additional benefits such as UPF 50 sun protection and dry cell technology. But the company wants to get rid of racerbacks without collars and that isn’t cool because it’s not like those necklines are actually plunging.
Racerbacks are a useful advancement in golf apparel, and once again, Spiranac’s article touched on the progress of golf apparel: “In order to perform at the optimal level, golfers need to be able to rotate, extend, crouch, and bend, often in extreme weather conditions for up to five or six hours at a time.
4. Dressy Jeans Are Allowed
Wait, what? Here’s part one of a corny rule pertaining to jeans.
The LPGA allows its golfers to wear dressy jeans. There’s nothing wrong with that, but what is the definition of dressy? Jeans are a wardrobe staple, so everyone has their own thoughts on what defines dressy.
Here’s another question: what if a LPGA golfer isn’t interested in a pair of jeans that resemble those modeled on the runway? Hmm…
So regular jeans are banned but so called dressy jeans are okay? Again, where do we draw the line here? And is the fashion police going to be on the course to enforce these rules at all times?
3. Cutoffs And Holey Jeans Aren’t Allowed
So dressy jeans are allowed, but cutoffs and holey jeans aren’t allowed? Yup, that appears to be the rule. This one is a little more consistent with some of the rules we’ve seen already, but there are just a few too many denim clauses in the LPGA’s code. Imagine all the jeans sponsors they’re potentially throwing away!
Like we mentioned in the entry above, the definition of “dressy” is debatable because everyone has their own thoughts on the concept of that adjective. In our opinion, cutoffs are acceptable if they’re not too short and holey jeans are fine if they’re not completely exposing your legs. The LPGA’s new dress is a bit too strict and hypocritical.
2. There’s A Dress Code For Pro-Am Parties Too
One of the LPGA’s controversial rules states that the appropriate outfits must be worn to pro-am parties.
In case you didn’t know, a pro-am party is basically a pairings party where you get your pro through a random lottery drawing at a big cocktail party. With that being said, LPGA golfers should be allowed to wear whatever they want (within reason obviously) because it’s a semi-formal event. They’re going to enjoy drinks and dance the night away, so why apply restrictions to ruin the fun? It just sounds like a bunch of fears that unwanted inappropriate misconduct will occur. But why put the onus on the women by enforcing these rules?
1. Unless Told “No,” Golf Apparel Is Acceptable
Here’s the biggest rule of them all: Unless told “no,” golf apparel is acceptable.
This arguable rule is indeed extremely vague. What defines golf apparel? After all, the LPGA has already made it clear in its rules that apparel has to be this and that in order to be allowed on the golf course. With all the restrictions they’ve placed on these women, there’s bound to be some debatable instances where women are showing up to the golf course in outfits that end up being deemed out of line with the LPGA’s rules.
Maybe the LPGA should just do away with their new dress code or revert back to its old one because most, if not all, of the rules contradict each other. Oh, and the golfers don’t like it.
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