Competitive junior golfers play all year round. Even in the off-season before the Spring tournament schedule kicks back in, they are still playing, working on the swing, dialing in distances, keeping loose. As parents we encourage a balanced approach to winter play and work-outs, but to be truly competitive when the Spring season hits - unless the course is closed and blanketed with ice and snow - they need to be playing as much as the weather and off-season schedule allows.
For the most part it's pretty miserable playing a round of golf in cold, wet weather, but golf clothing technology has advanced to such a point that you can still feel comfortable regardless of the weather. In addition, there will be tournaments that will proceed regardless of inclement weather and if the junior player has not practiced in it and is not equipped to deal with it, results may be pretty dismal, both on the scoreboard and emotionally. We look at the best cold weather golf tops and a few essential accessories.
Best Cold Weather Tops for Older Juniors
I recently spent an extremely cold day officiating an Inter Collegiate golf tournament. Wind chill brought temperatures below freezing and made for some difficult conditions off the tee too. Fleece and warm hats were the order of the day, a brand not normally associated with golf but definitely with cold caught my eye, and quite a few of the kids were wearing a marsupial inspired accessory to keep their hands warm.
FootJoy Rain Hydro Jackets
Best golf top in the market right now for wind and rain. The three-layer bonded, knit fabric provides 100% water-proof and breathable protection for golfers. Four-way stretch allows for a fluid and natural swing. The pieced elastic waistband provides extra comfort and flexibility. There is a back-pocket for scorecard and accessories, providing water-proof protection there too and this is one of the lightest tops on the Tour. Footjoy offers a 2 year water-proof guarantee. It's a bit pricey, around $240, but should be your go-to top year round for years to come. Currently on sale at Footjoy for around $160. Also highly recommended is the 2022 Hydrolite rain jacket.
Nike Therma-Fit Top and Vest
Wearing the Nike Therma-Fit top or vest fees like you are wrapped in a soft, warm, cocoon of comfort. But don't let the luxury fool you, the stretchy woven fabric in high-motion areas gives you plenty of room to power through your swing and the Therma-Fit technology manages your own body temperature to keep you warm through the round. Whether you need the full top or the vest, just for core warmth on days you can leave the jacket at home, Nike has you covered in warmth and style.
Puma Moving Day Cloudspun Pullover
Crazy soft, super stretchy and moisture wicking, inspired by athletes performing at the highest levels and under the most pressure on Tour. Honestly it feels like you are wrapped in a cotton candy cloud. Formstripe branding, a hidden kangaroo pocket and the comfort and unencumbered movement of a low profile Stith collar. The green stripe on the color represents Moving Day! Make it happen!
adidas COLD.RDY Golf Hoodie
Yes, golfers are playing in hoodie these days! The adidas Primegreen Cold Ready Hoodie is an excellent one for cold days. Built-in stretch allows for maximum range of motion on the course and the hood with drawstring really pulls in added warmth and comfort. Primegreen is also very eco-friendly - it is a high-performance fabric that is made with recycled materials.
Columbia Golf Omni-Wick Shotgun Pullover
A leading name in clothing for whatever the elements throw at you, Columbia has come out with a great golf top. Made from Omni-Wick, high performance wicking fabric - this is a great top to layer-up (wear it under a jacket on cold days), keeping your body dry and retaining elasticity and ease through the swing. It may run a little big and comes in a vast array of colors to brighten up any day.
Best Cold Weather Golf Accessories
Golf Mitts are something we always take to tournaments in cold weather. They are life-saving accessories for wearing while walking between holes (whether you are pushing or carrying clubs) and sometimes even between shots, especially when you are waiting! Stick a hand warmer in the mitts at the beginning of each round and you are setting yourself up for a much more comfortable and positive experience.
Titelst Hand Warmer
These are suddenly very popular in the Collegiate crowd. They are easy to wear around your waist, and position well behind the back when not in use to not interfere with the swing. They are more practical than mittens when carrying clubs - although we recommend mittens when you're pushing a cart. The Titleist hand warmer is a tube design with micro-fleece lining. The waistband is adjustable and it can be used in all weather conditions. We suggest putting a few hand warmers inside it for very cold days. Of course it can be used not only for golf, people have recommended this hand warmer for hiking, spectating and camping too.
Keeping your head warm helps maintain temperature throughout the body. Wear a warm hat. It cannot be stated more simply. In all my mom-on-the-bag days I wore a warm headband - sometimes under my warm hat. There is no reason to be too cold on the golf course.
Best Cold Weather Tops for Younger Juniors
Adidas Golf Pullover Parka
A great low temperature top for kids. The half zip and hoodie design is cool looking and also offer protection from the elements. Raglan sleeves are designed so kids can swing freely and the front pockets are not only convenient but are great to place a couple of handwarmers in and keep the hands warm between shots. We like that this jacket is made from 100% recycled materials.
Under Armour Sweater Fleece Pullover
There's nothing more comfortable than fleece on a cold, winter day! This Under Armour Sweater Fleece Pullover for junior golfers provides maximum warmth and no bulk for an easy swing through the ball. UA Storm technology repels water but does not compromise breathability. The stretch fabric allows for complete mobility. This is stylish as a wear alone top, or a layer on a particularly cold day.
Puma Junior 1/4 Pullover
Puma is reliably stylish and comfortable. Designed to keep the junior golfer warm on the course with DryCell technology that wicks moisture to keep the player dry and warm. Puma has great color options too!
Under Armor Youth Cold-Gear Layer
We swear by base layers whether golfing in the elements or skiing. Our boys love the UA brand in particular for their comfort and elasticity. These have a dual layer fabric - super soft and warm interior and quick drying, smooth exterior. Stretch-mesh ventilation panels are in strategic places for added comfort and not letting the wearer over-heat - because even on a cold day, the body is still working hard!
We love seeing junior golfers out in inclement weather. It shows great attitude, character and passion. But keep it warm and comfortable with the right golf top, and remember mitts and hats are an essential addition to a golfer's winter gear workout. Our article on Winter Golf for Junior Golfers has some additional information and insights.