A national athlete turned Korean medicine doctor runs to build a hospital for retired athletes

전재우 기자l승인2019.11.27






▲ Inwon Seo, Korean Medicine Doctor in Gueui-dong

Korean medicine doctor Inwon Seo is a former member of the national modern pentathlon team and is serving as the president of the Modern Pentathlon Association. Seo was born to a Korean medicine doctor family but found his talent in sports. The splendid national team career behind when he got injured, he now is passing down his family tradition as a Korean medicine doctor. 

Pentathlon is consisted of fencing, swimming, horse riding, shooing and athletics. It requires extreme physical strength and one must train every part of muscles strong enough to complete the course. And Seo made most of his knowledge in Korean medicine especially the Korean sasang constitutional medicine built based on typological constitution. 

As a Korean medicine doctor now, he offers his professional knowledge and experience to his juniors for sasang diagnosis, training methods and psychological preparation. Some of the famous figures who went through a touch of Seo’s hands are: athlete Jaekeun Jang, footballer Youngpyo Lee, volleyball player Youngtaek Lee and table tennis player Dayeon Kang. Kang in particular suffered from constant sweat and Seo solved it with pork. 

According to Seo, swimmers must improve waist muscle, fencers leg muscle and athletes depend on short or long distance. ‘Souem type’ must not take massage before the game and ‘taeeum type’ must strengthen muscles for the game. Based on these sasang analysis, Seo brings up diet and appropriate poses for exercise to each athlete in their field.

In western medicine, athletes are managed based on digitization of ultrasonic waves, blood test, etc. In oriental medicine, on the other hand, doctors pay attention to aeremia of each player. The chemical treatment-driven western medicine sometimes causes doping issues while oriental counterpart takes flow of energy inside body as important as physical. By using these two advantages of both medicines, Seo suggests, better results will be drawn. 

Recently, Seo is working on development of ‘eco-friendly sports tape’. He was much worried about the existing chemical contained sports tapes that can negatively affect the skin it touches. Many of his profits generated from the clinic goes to development of this eco-friendly tape. 

Apart from the tape, Seo is planning to build a hospital for retired athletes. Athletes train their body to the level of extreme. As they are getting old, however, the body pays the extreme back with pain. The problem is that not many of them can afford hospital fee. With this good will and determination in heart, Seo keeps himself busy collecting the necessary fund from related organizations including the Korean Sport & Olympic Committee.

전재우 기자  healway@naver.com
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