flash in the east and in the west. Choi Yoon, chairman of OK Financial Group, who headed the Korean national team for the Hangzhou Asian Games, was busier than anyone else during the tournament. It was not easy to travel to and from major stadiums in Hangzhou, which has an area of 16,596 square kilometers, about 28 times larger than Seoul (605 square kilometers). Nevertheless, he visited an average of six and up to eight stadiums a day. It wasn’t just watching the game. He sincerely cheered and encouraged the sweating national team player. While providing support throughout the competition, Chairman Choi said, “It’s not enough. I should have found more and helped…”He said, “I was disappointed.
“I was happy throughout the tournament,” Choi told the Maeil Business Newspaper on the 8th. It was touching,” he said in a word. During the competition, he took about 30,000 steps a day and took care of athletes in each event. He, who is also a third-generation Korean-Japanese manager, became the head of the Asian Games team in anticipation of a new opportunity for the sports world without delay or school ties. “I moved and cheered a lot, and I did what I had to do,” he said with a smile. 안전놀이터
Chairman Choi, who was the vice-captain of the squad at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics, was appointed as the first Korean head of the Asian Games from Korean residents in Japan in early July. He invested generously in supporting the team even before the tournament. He met leaders of all 39 sports at the Asian Games and provided a total of 140 million won in encouragement. In addition, gifticons and T-shirts were presented to all the athletes during the Chuseok holiday during the competition, and medal compensation and additional incentives were provided to the athletes’ village, carefully taking care of the athletes.
Still, Chairman Choi said, “There were many sports I wanted to help a little more. Kabaddi and women’s water polo are said to have participated in the competition at their own expense. If he had been appointed as the head of the team earlier, he would have been able to provide customized help for each event.
Choi is an entrepreneur who is serious about sports. A rugby player in high school, he has been the 24th president of the Korea Rugby Association since February 2021. It has also played a strong role in various sports, including rugby, running a men’s professional volleyball team, hosting the KLPGA Tour tournament, judo, and supporting baseball for the deaf.
There is a keyword that Chairman Choi emphasized as the head of the tournament. One is “happy sports.” “So far, we have said ‘let’s do our best’ or ‘let’s go for the best’ in Korean sports, but the word happiness has been put on the back burner. Whatever the result, having happiness after the game is over is the same as the basic spirit of sports. Regardless of the ranking, it is necessary to challenge something, do your best, and look back and think that you were happy,” he stressed. “I hope that athletes, leaders, parents, and even the people who watched the game will feel the happiness that sports bring. I hope the Asian Games will be an opportunity to start feeling a “happy sport,” he stressed.
The other is non-cognitive sports. Chairman Choi has used the word “non-recognition,” which contains a little-known meaning, not “unpopularity,” which is commonly used. “Each event has a history, and the efforts of the players,” he said. “When these things are known more, people will know, and then they can go to popular sports.” Chairman Choi said, “A sport that I didn’t even know by name seems to have become known to some extent through this Asian Games, and interest has increased a lot. Through this, we should become a society where various sports values are more respected, he said.
Chairman Choi expressed in a word, “Sports is a thing that gives happiness.” “There are basically rules in sports,” he said. They try and compete with each other to win in it. Then, if you come out of the court or the ground, you can become friends. There’s a purity you can’t see anywhere else. That’s the charm of sports,” he explained.
As such, he emphasized the need for a system that can learn the philosophy and values of sports from an early age. Chairman Choi said, “Since I was young, I can compete within the regulations through sports, and among them, I can learn with my body that I can be considerate of others and become friends.” Everyone should have the need for ‘one person, one 技’ from school. If this goes well, it will be a shortcut to advanced sports, starting with daily sports, improving elite and professional sports, and further developing the sports industry, he said. “If school sports develop, Korean sports will be able to surpass Japan.”
After completing his duties as the head of the team after the team’s dismissal ceremony on the 8th, Chairman Choi will return to the management line. “If you run a company, you must make a profit, and on the other hand, you must contribute to society,” he said. I felt a lot of happiness from sports through the Asian Games squad leader. Now, I want to think again about what can convey happiness to the company and customers. I’ll think about it,” he said.