Course of Style: Nike repositions Tiger Woods Apparel

Course of Style: Nike repositions Tiger Woods Apparel

Tiger’s new "Sunday shirt."

Tiger Woods’s swing is evolving, and his wardrobe is evolving, too, according to executives of Nike Golf, his longtime clothing and equipment sponsor. You may have noticed Woods this year wearing white belts, stronger colors, and an experimental version of Nike’s FREE shoes, with “barefoot” or natural motion technology. Apparently this is just the beginning of a new performance-based, athletic look for Woods on the course.

With his swing moving toward increased body rotation under Sean Foley, Woods wants his apparelTiger Woods's shirt collar

Nike Golf

The perforated collar of Tiger's new shirts are ventilated. to be more athletic than ever, according to Nike. That means greater stretch and lighter weight. A good example is Tiger’s new “Sunday shirt,” an ultra-light jersey polo with perforated collar (for both ventilation and lightness) and snap buttons (rodeo style). Of course, it’s red — but a shade of red that is sportier and more mod than Tiger’s typical Sunday shirt. The placket and collar are “no sew,” which means the seams are sealed without thread, again to save weight. The shirt tips the scales at a gossamer 2.9 ounces. (Golf shirts typically weigh 5 ounces or more.)

“We have repositioned Tiger,” said Patti Harrison, the director of global product and marketing for Nike Golf, in the Nike showroom in New York this week.

Harrison said that Nike had essentially merged the Tiger Woods Platinum collection, a high-end offering of clothes the golfer wears on the tour, with Nike’s regular Tour Performance line, which includes its most technical offerings.

“For a long time he wore traditional product,” Harrison said. “We see an opportunity to take him to a new plane. We want to position him as the top of performance, kind of performance plus. We engineered these garments to meet his needs.”

Whatever Woods wears on the course, no matter how technical or advanced in styling, it will always look somewhat subdued, even conservative, compared to other high ranking players since he is not festooned with logos for other companies, from ball makers to banks. Just a swoosh or two here and there. The Nike look tends to be clean.