With seven major golf championships, a Presidential Medal of Freedom, a spot in the PGA Hall of Fame, and one helluva refreshing beverage to his name Arnold Palmer has racked up quite the cache of accolades in his day, but we think he’s deserving of just one more – The King of the Polo Shirt. During his dominating run through the professional golf circuit in the late fifties and sixties Palmer was best known for three things: his immaculate swing, his unflappable attitude, and his endless supply of polo shirts.
For a shirt that is intrinsically linked to so many sports, it might seem imprudent to declare just one athlete as the epitome of a perfect polo wearer, but no one owned this pullover quite like Palmer. The key behind Palmer’s mastery of the polo was consistency. His shirts (which for those that are interested were primarily Munsingwear based on the logos) were almost always in the same style – three button placket worn open, high cuffed sleeves, trim fit around the body with a loose knit collar that flapped carelessly as he charted his way around the course. Not too loose, but not too tight, refined enough for the country club, yet comfortable enough to play in, to this day Palmer’s tops remain the paragon of a proper polo. We’re not gonna say that the polo was the secret to Palmer’s success behind the tee, but it certainly helped to immortalize him as the coolest cat to ever swing a club.
Comments on “Arnold Palmer | The Swinging King of the Polo”
Ben Hogan also had impeccable classic style. So did Walter Hagen.
Palmer is an icon, but describing his swing as ‘immaculate’…yeah, maybe not.
A post about Arnold Palmer and no mention of the beverage?
There was a mention Amy.
Beyond the polos, there are other great golf-related items that are timeless too. Everyone gets all hot about Baracuta G9 harringtons but any 1960s “golf jacket” (as I grew up hearing them refered to) works for me.
Hey Michael, long time no see!! Fantastic to see all of those old Munsingwear/Penguin polos again. Arnold & Jack are true icons.
Post could have worked equally well with a focus on cardigans or trousers.
I don’t believe we’ve met (though my memory is not what it used to be). Though it is nice to make your acquaintance!
Do you work at McGregor? I sold a Polo Ralph Lauren patch madras windbreaker to a fellow in England. He said it he bought it because it filled a hole in his wardrobe because he used to have a patch madras McGregor golf jacket from the 50s that slipped away from him and it’s his white whale/holy grail.
Certainly something noble to shoot for. lol
A famously not immaculate swing.
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