To give you optimal performance, golf pants, like ski pants, should bend easily at the knee. So why is it that golf pants traditionally are cut with a straight seam running from your hip to your ankle, like regular streetwear, with no articulation at the knee like lots of ski pants? Because on a hot, sweaty day, bunching at the mid leg and behind your knee isn't very comfortable.
Having lifted the polo shirt to a new level of performance, manufacturers now are experimenting with golf trousers that are loaded with technical features, including knee seams. Both Oakley and Nike have introduced golf pants with pleated or articulated knees to enhance your range of motion and ability to execute the swing.
Oakley, a company that knows a bit about skiwear, accomplishes flexibility through a series of seams, some of which are curved, that intersect around the knee. These pinstriped golf trousers appear suit-like but perform like stretch pants.
Nike’s new Sport Collection has a tighter fit than its other golf performance lines, but its trousers achieve flexibility through the knee with a couple of diagonal seams that run at angles to the main side seams. Close up, the Nike Sport pants even look a lot like ski pants—in the knee area, that is.