All eyes will clearly be focused on the return of Tiger Woods this week. How many of them will be looking down at his feet? Nike Golf is hoping there will be more than a few that do as ETW will debut a new set of kicks at his Hero World Challenge. His first tournament since the Fall of 2015 will see Woods wear a prototype of his latest signature golf shoe, the Nike TW '17.
“This shoe is an absolutely integral part of my return to the sport I love and have missed so much,” Woods says. “Nike really got in the zone with me. I knew Tobie (Hatfield, Nike Senior Director of Athlete Innovation) and I were on to something special back when I tried on the first prototype. I feel supreme support from this shoe which leads to the utmost confidence when I step onto the course."
Nike reported Woods and Hatfield meet over dinner during the Greenbrier Classic (July of 2015). During the discussion, Woods revealed his new swing has shifted his dominance from his left leg to his right. By October 2015, Hatfield reportedly delivered four options of an initial prototype shoe to Woods at his home in Florida. The prototypes addressed the need of keeping his feet more secure and locked down in his shoe. Woods selected one of the concepts to then move forward with. In February of 2016, Hatfield and Carl Madore, Innovation Design Lead for Nike Golf footwear, shared four variations of the prototype Woods had selected to assess. Nike said Tiger hit some shots on a simulator and was intrigued by the duo’s strapping system concept that is found in the new TW ’17. It’s purpose is to help keep him secure through his swing and a full day of golf. In April, Nike said it delivered the finished product to Woods, who began his own wear testing on the course. Since returning from surgery, Nike said it’s the only golf shoe Woods has worn.
The Nike TW '17 will be available in Spring 2017. No word yet on price.