Before he hit the age of 30, South Korean martial arts star Kim Woon Kyoum challenged himself to take his career to the next level by joining the world’s largest martial arts organization.
He eventually joined Rich Franklin’s ONE Warrior Series after a series of tryouts last year and then earned a six-figure contract with ONE Championship just recently following a string of exemplary performances.
Now, he plies his trade at the Home of Martial Arts.
Kim is scheduled to see action this Friday night, 6 December at ONE: MARK OF GREATNESS. The event beams live from the Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
Kim’s journey up to this point in his career has been a memorable one, as he recalls.
“I started training Muay Thai at the age of 19,” Kyoum said.
“And I trained for about two-to-three years. At the age of 23, I served in the army, and after I finished my military service, I started training martial arts.”
Kim had a difficult childhood, his parents divorced and he was left with his sister and grandmother.
“When I was around 12-or-13 years old, my parents got divorced,” he said.
“My father, sister, and grandmother were the ones who took care of me. During those times, my father rarely went home. That period in my life was really hard for me.”
When Kim joined OWS, that’s when everything changed. At first, he wasn’t sure if he’d made it due to a mispronunciation of his name.
“When they called my name, it was pronounced incorrectly,” he said.
“So I did not know if they choose me or not. My friend said that it seemed like me, but I did not believe it. At first, I was so shocked but I am very happy to have been selected.”
Being able to do what he loves for a living, Kim wouldn’t want to be anywhere else. A victory in Malaysia this Friday night only proves his passion.
“I have done martial arts for a long time. It is what I am best at. I want to do the best I can,” Kim concluded.