Yang Hak-seon

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Yang Hak-Seon
Korea London Yang Hakseon 02 (7771945238).jpg
Personal information
Full name Yang Hak-Seon
Nickname(s) The God of Vault
Country represented  South Korea
Born (1992-12-06) December 6, 1992 (age 24)
Gwangju, South Korea
Height 1.59 m (5 ft 2 12 in)
Discipline Men's artistic gymnastics

Yang Hak-Seon (Hangul: 양학선, Korean pronunciation: [jaŋ.ɦak.s͈ʌn]; born 6 December 1992) is the first South Korean gymnast to win an Olympic gold medal.

Personal life[edit]

According to his Olympic profile, Yang started his gymnastics career at the age of 9, following his brother's footsteps into the sport.[1]

Yang is currently attending the Korea National Sport University.[2]

Yang's parents are Yang Gwan-gwon and Ki Suk-hyang.[3] Their impoverished family previously lived in one of Gwangju's shantytowns, before relocating to North Jeolla Province's Gochang, in South Korea's countryside, in 2010, after his father, a construction worker, suffered from serious injuries.[3] His family currently lives in a makeshift converted greenhouse constructed from PVC pipes.[2] After Yang's father lost his job, Yang supported the family with a modest income from the Korea Gymnastic Association.[4] Yang's coach Cho Sung-doe admitted that he had been unaware of the family's precarious financial situation before Yang won the gold medal.[4]


Yang is the reigning vault champion at the Asian Games. In 2012, he became the first Korean gymnast to win Olympic gold in gymnastics, winning the vault competition in London.[3] In 2013, He won gold in vault at the 2013 Summer Universiade in Kazan, Russia. He is famous in the gymnastics world for performing the hardest vault in the world, a front handspring front layout with three twists. Yang is additionally working on a second difficult skill, but this vault is from a sideways entry.[5] He is also the reigning world champion, having won gold in the vault at both the 2011[6] and 2013 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships[7] However, at the 2014 World Artistic Gymnastics Championships in Nanning, China, he fell on both his vaults, failing to defend his title and placing 7th overall. He was similarly unable to defend his Olympic title at the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro due to injury.

Yang currently shares the honor with Kenzo Shirai of Japan for having one of the two vaults with the highest difficulty score of 6.0 in men's vault under International Gymnastics Federation's most current 2017-2020 Code of Points to be named after them. The "Yang Hak-Seon" vault is a handspring takeoff onto the vaulting platform, then triple twist in laid out position off and into a blind landing. Yang and Shirai remain the only gymnasts who have successfully performed their own version of the most difficult vault in the world at this time (mid 2017).


  1. ^ "Hak Seon Yang". Athlete overviews. London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games. Retrieved 9 August 2012. 
  2. ^ a b [런던] 양학선 꿈 자란 비닐하우스 들여다보니 '울컥'. Nate News (in Korean). NATE. 7 August 2012. Retrieved 9 August 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c Kang Seung-woo (August 7, 2010). "Korean gymnast rises from poverty". The Korea Times. Retrieved August 9, 2012. 
  4. ^ a b Kwon, KJ; Alexis Lai. "Gymnastics Olympics 2012: Yang Hak-seon, South Korean gold gymnast, vaults from rags to riches". CNN. Retrieved 9 August 2012. 
  5. ^ Sport Chosun (October 6, 2013). "'도마의신'양학선 세계체조선수권 2연패,적수 없었다(in Korean)". Naver. 
  6. ^ S (October 6, 2013). "Exciting showdown at Tokyo Worlds". Tokyo2011.fig-gymnastics.com. 
  7. ^ S (October 6, 2013). "South Korea's Yang wins men's vault title at gymnastics worlds". Nampa.org. 

External links[edit]