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7 Korean Celebrities Who Used To Be Athletes

They surely benefitted from the sports they played in the past!
Korean Actors And K-Pop Idols Who Were Former Athletes

The talents each Korean star possesses are *remarkable* and will leave you pondering over the thought if there is anything they cannot do. Whether it be singing, dancing, modelling, acting, or even playing sports, these celebs have worked extremely hard to hone their skills, grow as individuals, and achieve everything they have now.

In another universe, if these Korean stars hadn't turned out to be idols or actors, they would have continuously made their name known in South Korea through the field of sports because of how exceptional they are in the sport they trained in.

Here are some of the Korean actors and K-pop idols who were former athletes:

1. ENHYPEN's Sung Hoon

The way Park Sung Hoon dances ~gracefully~ and at the same time powerfully is influenced by the sport he used to play. He started figure skating when he was nine years old and has been in the field for 10 years, also competing in different countries. Before becoming a figure skater, he was an ice hockey player. Sung Hoon truly deserves the title "Ice Prince" for he looks charming and magnificent as he glides on the ice!


His journey in K-pop began when he got scouted by BigHit Entertainment. Sung Hoon accepted the offer as he thought this would be essential for him to train his dancing skills which he could use in figure skating. However, as his training went on, he began to dream of becoming an idol. Although he has achieved so much with ENHYPEN in the K-pop industry, whenever BELIFT gives him a chance to figure skate, you can still clearly see how his body is seemingly connected to the skating rink. As Sung Hoon would often say, it's like meeting an old friend for him whenever he’s inside the rink.

ENHYPEN JUNGWON’s Amazing Mind Control & SUNGHOON’s Ice Skating Skills! | KPDB Ep. #114 Highlight

2. Song Hye Kyo

The Descendants Of The Sun lead actress and Hallyu queen is also a trained figure skater. I guess this explains why she exudes an ~elegant~ and graceful aura. Song Hye Kyo trained from elementary to middle school and was selected for the Korean national team. And, did you know that she had the same teacher as the South Korean figure skater, Kim Yuna? Yes, you read that right! They said that if Song Hye Kyo hadn't given up skating, she could have been a player like Kim Yuna.

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Even though Hye Kyo pursued her career in acting instead of focusing on becoming an athlete, she was still able to do figure skating for some of her shows and even in some of the dramas she stars in. You can clearly see how advanced Song Hye Kyo's figure skating skills are as she slides along the ice with such stable balance during the ice-skating scene in the drama series Full House with her co-star, Rain.

Song Hye Kyo Ice Skating Collection

3. GOT7's Jackson

Jackson Wang, the Chinese singer who debuted in the K-pop boy group GOT7 in the year 2014, trained in fencing with his father during his teenage years before becoming a K-pop idol trainee. Being raised in a family of gold medal-winning athletes explains why his career started off as a professional athlete. It runs in their family blood as Jackson's mother was a gymnast from Shanghai and his father is an Asian Games gold medalist in fencing. Jackson became an Olympic-level sabre fencer at age 16 under Hong Kong's official junior fencing team.


In spite of winning first place in some of the numerous fencing competitions he participated in and the sports scholarship offer he got from Stanford University in 2011 as he was preparing for the London OIympics, Jackson left that world of him and went to South Korea to chase his dream of becoming a known performer. We love a dedicated man!

[GOT7's Hard Carry] Special fencing match between Jackson and Gu bon gil | Ep.6-4

4. Ahn Bo Hyun

You can already tell just by looking at the Yumi’s Cells actor's body that he must have practiced some tedious sport in the past. His physique looks impressively armored, and it is because Ahn Bo Hyun was training to be a professional boxer before he debuted as a model and actor. According to what Bo Hyun said in one episode of the show Home Alone, he joined the boxing team when he was in middle school and got scouted by a physical education teacher in high school. Despite the protests of his parents because they do not want their son to get injured in the ring (yikes!), Bo Hyun still gave it a go. After the rigorous period of training, he participated in several tournaments and became champion a lot of times in Busan, his hometown.


During the peak of his boxing career, Bo Hyun got an invite to enter the fashion industry. He took this chance as it was a step closer to his childhood dream of becoming an actor. Aww!

Ahn Bo Hyun stays fit by going to the boxing gym [Home Alone Ep 339]

5. Lee Si Young

Korean actress Lee Si Young was a champion-level female amateur boxer. Unlike the usual "trained in sports" actors and idol stories we listed, Si Young debuted as an actress in 2008 and started training in boxing in the year 2010 to prepare for her role as a female boxer for a TV series. She trained at a local gym with the guidance of former world champion boxer, Hong Soo Hwan.

Despite the show never making it to be aired, she has kept up the boxing training. How admirable it is to see her pursue her boxing career along with her acting career and both excel in it. Just, WOW! She made it into the South Korean women's national team in the year 2013, defeating player Kim Da Som in the 48-kilogram class. As an actress, she also won multiple awards like the Best Actress Award in the 22nd Buil Film Awards in 2013 and Netizen Award in KBS Drama Awards during the year 2014.


(Lee Si Young ) (Knowing bros)

6. WEi's Kim Yo Han

Before joining Produce X 101 to debut as an idol, Kim Yo Han was a skilled taekwondo black belt athlete. He had his father as his coach, which, according to him, created a little complicated relationship between them for he calls his father "coach" at school and could not call him "dad" outside their home. He did taekwondo for 13 years and considering he was quite good at the sport, he told the cast of the show Naturally that he won first place in two youth national competitions. When he guested in the show Radio Star, Yo Han shared that he got injured while training. His ankle hadn't been in a good condition since that incident, and it progressed into a chronic injury.

After realizing that the taekwondo path isn't for him, Yo Han decided to become an entertainer and auditioned as an actor. His idol career skyrocketed from there, auditioning in Produce X 101 to becoming a part of the final debut lineup, debuting solo, and finally debuting in another K-pop group named WEi. His dedication is really inspiring and praiseworthy!


kim yohan showing off his taekwondo skills

7. Shin Seung Ho

In the currently airing Korean drama Alchemy Of Souls, Shin Seung Ho (who portrays the crown prince in the series) undeniably has the body of an athlete. The rising star played football for 11 years until his sophomore year in college. When he left the football field because he suffered from injuries, he started off his career in modeling and eventually studied acting since he was told that his appearance is much suitable for an acting career.

Seung Ho debuted in the web series A-Teen and played the role of a basketball athlete during high school. Just like in his real life, his character also experienced a time when he had to quit playing basketball. Seung Ho did an amazing job in portraying his character best, which led him to star in more series. As someone who has watched him from A-Teen and is currently watching him now in Alchemy Of Souls, it is such a *proud* moment to see how much he has grown in terms of his acting skills and the variety of roles he enacted also from the different dramas he participated in!


Unforgettable First Kiss. txt | A-TEEN | Season1 - EP.23 (Click CC for ENG sub)


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