Play to Your Strengths, Practice to Your Weaknesses
You're on a long par five. You pull the driver from your bag and proceed to pipe it down the middle, 260 yards from the green. On your next shot you pull your fairway wood and stripe it 220 yards down the middle and leave yourself a 50-yard approach for your third shot. You then blade your third shot over the green, chuck your fourth short, chip on and two putt for a double-bogey. Wait, how'd that happen? You were in prime position after your first two shots and now find yourself carding a seven.
The root of the problem may have started during your last practice session, where you admired those long drives down the range and neglected the ever-important intermediate and short-distance wedge game. We all fall into the trap of practicing what we're good at because, well, it's fun and rewarding in an I-like-instant-gratification type of way. And while it's true that while you're working on the areas of your game that are costing you the most strokes the other areas that you consider the most consistent may become less refined, the trade-off is typically a beneficial one.
We all fall into the trap of practicing what we're good at because, well, it's fun and rewarding in an I-like-instant-gratification type of way.
That said, let's go back to that par five situation again. You're sitting 260 from the green after your great drive. If you could pick a distance to hit in from you'd pick 115 because that's your favorite full-swing-wedge distance. Your goal is now to hit your second shot just 145 to set up your strength and the potential for a birdie or par and avoid the short-game wedges (weakness) around the green until you've had time to work a bit more on them.
Thinking your way around the course like this can seem more like a game of chess than the golf you've been playing but it'll pay off in the form of lower scores immediately.