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ECCO strides ahead with the BIOM Hybrid 2

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A shoe design ought to begin with the foot in mind. Sounds obvious, right? ECCO’s founder didn’t think it was obvious to shoemakers in the 1960s. In the golf sphere, too, form seemed be trumping function in the late 2000s when ECCO decided to take golf shoes in a totally new direction, offering golfers spikeless, comfortable shoes that could be worn on the course, in the clubhouse and on the street.

Karl Toosbuy founded ECCO in 1963, and the company has been pushing innovation in footwear in general, and golf footwear in particular, ever since. Toosbuy, an accomplished shoemaker, was driven to own and operate his own business. He left a manager position at a shoe factory in Copenhagen to start his own outfit guided by a unique philosophy.

The idea that the shoes should be designed primarily with the foot in mind led to the creation of shoes that were supremely comfortable and functional. A commitment to quality, comfort and innovation lie at the heart of Toosbuy’s dream, and those principles are foundational to ECCO’s newest golf shoe: the BIOM Hybrid 2.

The Danish company produced its first pair of golf shoes in 1996. Since then, ECCO has signed the likes of Thomas Bjorn, Fred Couples, and Graeme McDowell. Perhaps most notably, the company pioneered the spikeless golf shoe revolution (ECCO calls them “hybrids”) with the launch of the original Golf Street shoe Fred Couples wore at the 2010 Masters.

FC5B2221
Above: Shoes in the ECCO BIOM series feature a completely anatomical last developed by scanning the feet of 2,500 athletes.

ECCO launched BIOM Golf in 2011 and produced the first golf shoe to utilize the company’s revolutionary Natural Motion technology. They followed up a year later with the BIOM Hybrid and then the Tour Hybrid in 2013, which features a high-performance outer and classic-looking upper.

Continuing the evolution of the BIOM technology in the golf shoe, ECCO is introducing the BIOM Hybrid 2 this season. It’s lighter and thinner than the existing BIOM Hybrid, which is presently one of the most popular golf shoes on the market.

I had a chance to speak with David Helter, ECCO USA’s Specialty Sales Director about the ECCO BIOM Hybrid 2, some of its component technology and the ECCO brand in general.

Check out the Q&A below.

BA: What about ECCO technology in shoe construction makes it different from its competitors?

DH: ECCO is one of the only major shoe manufacturers that own the entire production process. Producing our leathers and golf footwear exclusively in ECCO owned and operated factories allows for complete oversight of design and quality control.

ECCO Tannery 1
Above: One of ECCO’s tanneries, which are located in Europe, Southeast Asia and the Far East. 

Since its founding in 1963, ECCO has dedicated itself to the study of the human foot and has developed several unique technologies, most notably being our Direct Inject Process (DIP). Rather than using cement, like many manufacturers, each ECCO upper is placed in a mold where the polyurethane (PU) midsole is shot around it in liquid form creating a chemical bond. Not only does this process create an unbreakable, water-tight seal, it also reduces the overall weight of the shoe. As an alternative to the common EVA foam of other brands, PU is also highly flexible and resists breakdown for out-of-the-box comfort that lasts season after season.

Additional innovations include the ECCO Dynamic Traction System (E-DTS) outsole on our hybrid shoes that provides more than 800 traction angles and our HYDROMAX weatherproofing treatment to our leathers.

BA: Tell me about the leathers that ECCO uses in its shoes. What makes them so special?

DH: ECCO is the fifth-largest tannery in the world. In addition to producing all of our own, we provide leathers to many of the world’s leading luxury brands. More than 200 pairs of hands touch each piece of leather before it leaves our facilities, so ECCO customers can rest assured they are wearing only the best. Our vertical integration allows us to develop many specialty leathers for our golf collection, including highly-durable Yak and Camel along with traditional cowhide. In addition to world-class quality, all ECCO Golf leathers are treated with HYDROMAX for superb protection from the elements.

BA: Fred Couples and ECCO launched the spikeless shoe craze in 2010. What made the company’s spikeless shoes so popular?

DH: Couples brought hybrid golf footwear to global attention when he climbed the leaderboard in ECCO Golf Street at the 2010 Masters. Prior to that, no Tour players were competing in hybrid shoes, primarily because the materials couldn’t perform at that level. The ECCO E-DTS outsole – made from the same durable material as luggage wheels – changed that by offering more than 800 points of traction. It resists off-course wear and prevents on-course slippage despite Tour-level swing speeds. Golfers can travel seamlessly from car to course to other activities without changing shoes and enjoy a stylish, street-inspired aesthetic.

FC5B2219
Above: The mold for ECCO’s patented E-DTS hybrid outsole has approximately 100 molded traction bars offering 800 traction angles.

According to Golf Datatech statistics, in 2014, hybrid footwear now represents more than 45 percent of all golf footwear sales and ECCO leads the premium market in this category. ECCO remains at the forefront of the hybrid concept, now offering a diverse selection of hybrid product styles for golfers of all tastes.

BA: How has the BIOM Hybrid been received?

DH: BIOM Hybrid is a perfect example of how ECCO incorporates its extensive research into the human foot. It is built on the BIOM anatomical last which was created using data gathered after scanning more than 2,500 pairs of feet. It encourages the foot’s natural motion and brings it closer to the ground for increased feel while offering extreme flexibility and torsion. The result is BIOM Hybrid becoming the leading premium hybrid style in the golf market.

BA: So what’s next?

DH: In addition to BIOM Hybrid 2, ECCO will be launching several other new products this year including new Tour Hybrid and Street EVO One models that incorporate even more exotic leathers and lifestyle-driven aesthetics. There might be a few surprises as well. We are always looking for ways to incorporate fashion-forward upper designs with our E-DTS outsole to marry everyday style and superb on-course performance.

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9 Comments

9 Comments

  1. Stu

    Nov 6, 2014 at 12:05 pm

    Please make a wide version.

  2. Tanner

    Nov 6, 2014 at 7:54 am

    Will they ever create an anti sway shoe?

  3. Desmond

    Nov 5, 2014 at 12:45 pm

    I bought two pairs of the Biom w spikes — they fit better on my feet than the Hybrid. A little more money, but oh, so comfy with better leather and more stability.

    After reading the article, I am looking forward to the Tour Hybrid …. not in love with the Yak leather in the Hybrid.

  4. mike

    Nov 4, 2014 at 8:24 pm

    Bought my first pair this year at the recommendation of my club professional, and I have to say these are the best golf shoes I have ever worn. The comfort level is unreal. Try the biom zero – you are in for a nice surprise.

  5. Tony

    Nov 4, 2014 at 1:41 pm

    For $200 they better lower my score by 5 strokes.

  6. Don

    Nov 4, 2014 at 10:45 am

    I live in Vancouver. Where it is wet and I do not see too many people with spikeless shoes. How do these perform in sloppy conditions?

    • adam

      Nov 4, 2014 at 1:33 pm

      If they’re anything like the hybrid shoe from last season they are not very good in the muck. Every other condition they are great, however.

    • kev

      Nov 4, 2014 at 9:23 pm

      try looking for adidas climawarm golf shoes. you’ll thank me later. one of the best buys i ever made for sloppy wet cold golf condition golf shoes. i feel like superman golfing in northwest weather during cold wet days.

    • mike

      Nov 5, 2014 at 4:55 pm

      I live in Vancouver as well, I wear the hybrid biom spikeless all year and never slip even in a downpour, they aren’t great at keeping the feet super dry, but still the most comfortable shoes around, plus I would never go back to spikes after the comfort level these shoes bring. Like I said too, even in downpour I haven’t slipped while swinging

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Equipment

What GolfWRXers are saying about the clubs they chip with

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In our forums, our members have been discussing the clubs they like to use around the greens. WRXer ‘jomatty’ uses a 58-degree wedge for most shots around the green and asks fellow members if that’s an ‘amateur move’ or if it’s a default play for most players. Our members have their say.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • jholz: “I think the conventional wisdom is to use what works for you. Chipping is largely a matter of practice and comfort, and I think every player will have their own, personal preference. If you practice a ton with your 58* and can hit the shots you need with it – then more power to you. That being said, I find using a variety of clubs for chipping is beneficial for me. I assess every chip for the amount of green I have to work with, and how much crap I have to clear. Less green, more loft. Less crap and more green, lower loft. If it’s a generic green side chip with a bit of green to work with and a bit of crap to clear, I default to a mid-lofted wedge (I.e. a sand wedge), which for me is 54*. I would say I hit probably 75-80% of all chips with this club. If I have less green to work with, I will go up in loft to my 58*. If I have less crap to carry I will go down in loft perhaps using my 50*. Probably the most reliable shot in my bag is a little 9 iron chip from the fringe.”
  • demecca2: “I am the same as you. I pretty much use my 58 for every single shot unless I need to hit a bump shot into a hill. I would rather get really good with one club rather than just good with a bunch of clubs.”
  • nova6868: “Like several others have said, I do the bulk of my chipping and pitching with my 50 and 54. I only bring out the 58 if I need a chip with lots of spin, high pitch, or flop because I don’t have much green to work with. I just find the 50 and 54 to be more predictable in terms of my misses and the amount of roll out.”
  • aenemated: “My 52° pretty much exclusively. It’s just what I’ve always used for chipping going back to my high school days. Only time I’ll deviate is if it’s a really uphill lie.”
  • platgolf: “The 9 iron is my go-to for chipping. It has the right roll out to get it close.”
  • Sean2: “It depends on the situation. Anything from a 50º to a 62.”

Entire Thread: “What clubs do you chip with?”

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What GolfWRXers are saying about the best anti-left hybrid for a sweeper

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In our forums, our members have been discussing anti-left hybrids and which ones work best for a sweeper of the ball. WRXer ‘Hougz79’ is considering Callaway’s Mavrik Pro, TaylorMade’s SIM and PXG’s Gen 2 – and our members have been sharing their thoughts in our forum.

Here are a few posts from the thread, but make sure to check out the entire discussion and have your say at the link below.

  • Orlandogolfguru: “Cally super hybrid is supposed to be anti-left.”
  • Golf64: “Ping G410 is best out there, IMO.”
  • Wardonnation: “Have had 6 since and finally got it back.. 915 Titleist hands down…”
  • Valtiel: “I think there are two main factors/categories for hybrid fitting and eliminating the left miss. 1) Weight and length. Most hybrids are too long and too light which further complicates trying to slot them in as iron replacements vs wood replacements. I think many peo -y reputation that hybrids have has far more to do with #1 above than any inherent CG bias as a lot of people feel. I think CG bias is still important, don’t get me wrong, but we are often told to treat our hybrids more like irons while off the rack they are setup too much fairway woods. Don’t be afraid to tinker with weight and length; it makes a world of difference.”
  • halfsumo: “I am a sweeper and have trouble with hybrids going left. Like you have had success with Apex. Titleist hybrids in the flat and open settings have worked pretty well for me. The weird thing about the Titleist are that the “player’s” version usually has a weird offset to it which I think looks like it wants to go left. I had the TS2, and it was pretty solid, probably shouldn’t have sold it. I had the SIM Max, and it was totally draw-biased for me. 100% due to the upright lie angle. I think that anyone that struggles hitting hybrids left there are two options: 1. Steer away from any hybrid with a fixed hosel that cannot be adjusted more flat if necessary. Hybrids with stock flatter lie angle like Apex, Mav Pro and Mizuno CLK can work if you get lucky. The only hybrids that I’d look at are Titleist, PXG and Ping because they can all be adjusted flatter and more open and Titleist and PXG can also adjust the weights toward the toe. 2. If you really like a fixed hosel head, get fit and see if you can try shorter and heavier shafts. Something 90-100+ grams and like .5″ to 1.5″ shorter than stock. If it works, have it built and swing weighted properly. I like the looks of the Mav Pro, Super Hybrid and Epic Flash hybrids which are all supposed to be pretty good at being anti-left, but I have a PXG Gen 2 on order because of the adjustability (and sale price).”

Entire Thread: “Anti-left hybrid for a sweeper”

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Whats in the Bag

Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning winning WITBs: The Match: Champions for Charity

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phil-mickelson-witb-the-match-2-2020

Tiger Woods WITB

Driver: TaylorMade SIM (9 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D+ Limited 60 TX

tiger woods witb

3-wood: TaylorMade M5 (15  @14.25 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D+ Limited 70 TX

5-wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 @18.25 degrees)
Shaft: Mitsubishi Diamana D+ Limited 80 TX

Irons: TaylorMade P7TW (3-PW)
Shaft: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue X100

Wedges: TaylorMade MG2 TW/MT Grind (56-12, 60-11)
Shafts: True Temper Dynamic Gold Tour Issue S400

Putter: Scotty Cameron GSS Newport 2

Grips: Golf Pride Tour Velvet Cord 58R

Ball: Bridgestone Tour B XS

Peyton Manning WITB

Driver: Callaway Mavrik (9 degrees)
Shaft: Graphite Design Tour AD TP 6 X

3-wood: Callaway Rogue (15 degrees)

Irons: Callaway Mavrik Pro (3-PW)
Shafts: KBS C-Taper Lite 110 S

Wedges: Callaway Jaws MD5 (52, 56, 60)
Shafts: KBS C-Taper Lite 110 S

Putter: Scotty Cameron SB+

Ball: Bridgestone Tour B XS with #18

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