The world can’t seem to get enough of Korean reality TV, and shows like Physical 100 on Netflix have only added fuel to the fire. It’s a show that’s taken the world by storm, much like Squid Game, minus the death part (thankfully). In this intense competition, 100 contestants push themselves to the limit to be crowned the fittest survivor and walk away with a hefty cash prize of 300 million KRW. And in the show’s recent finale, the winner was announced: none other than the underdog himself, Woo Jin-Yong.
Who is Woo Jin-Yong?
Now, you might be thinking, “Who is this guy? I’ve never heard of him.” And we don’t blame you. When compared to the likes of the other finalists – Jo Jin-hyeong, Min-cheol, Hae-min, and Park Jin-yong – Woo Jin-yong might have seemed like an unlikely candidate for the grand prize. But here’s the thing: Woo Jin-yong is not your average reality TV contestant.
First off, he’s a cross-fitter. And if you’re not familiar with CrossFit, it’s essentially a fitness program that combines elements of weightlifting, gymnastics, and high-intensity cardio. Translation: it’s not for the faint of heart. But Woo Jin-yong is not one to shy away from a challenge. He’s also a snowboard cross-player with an impressive resume that includes representing South Korea in a variety of snowcross events, coaching the country’s national snowboarding team, and being the President of the Snowboard Committee of South Korea.
So yeah, he’s kind of a big deal.
P.S. But what really sets Woo Jin-yong apart is his attitude. Throughout the competition, he remained humble, gracious, and determined. He didn’t let the pressure get to him, and he never gave up – even when the odds were against him. And in the end, that’s what propelled him to victory. Of course, we can’t forget about the other finalists. Jo Jin-hyeong, Min-cheol, Hae-min, and Park Jin-yong all gave it their all, and they should be proud of what they accomplished. But it was Woo Jin-yong who emerged victorious, proving that sometimes the underdog really does have what it takes to come out on top.
He picked up Snowboard Cross as a hobby initially
Born in 1986, Woo Jin-yong originally pursued a career in physical education, graduating from Chung-Ang University with a degree in the subject and attaining a master’s degree from the university’s Graduate School of Physical Education. But it wasn’t until a stint in Canada in 2007 for language training that he discovered his love of snowboarding.
What started as a hobby quickly turned into a passion, and Woo Jin-yong became an official snowboard instructor before deciding to take the sport up professionally. Over the years, he’s competed in countless snowcross events and games, establishing himself as one of the most prominent figures in the sport in South Korea.
How did he win the competition?
But it wasn’t just Woo Jin-yong’s impressive snowboarding credentials that made him a standout contestant on Physical 100. Throughout the show, he proved himself to be a fierce competitor, holding his own in both individual and team challenges. He was even part of renowned MMA artist Sexyama / Choo Sung-hoon’s team and reached the Top 5 after the fourth quest where he beat his fellow opponents in a tag race.
In the show’s finale, Woo Jin-yong faced off against four other finalists in a series of challenges that tested their strength, endurance, and mental fortitude. But it was the final quest that ultimately decided the winner: a game called “infinite rope pulling” that pitted Woo Jin-yong against cast member Jung Hae-min.
Jin-Yong and Hae-Min had to pull a lengthy, heavy rope that was coiled in the wheel, using their body strength to pull the rope as fast as they could to win the series. Hae-Min had an impressive start, but Jin-yong’s tenacity was unwavering. While the competition was fierce and the time difference between the two contestants was only a few seconds, Woo Jin-yong consistently pulled the rope and managed to uncoil it before Jung Hae-min, earning him the coveted title of fittest survivor and the grand cash prize of 300 million KRW.
What’s next for Woo Jin-Yong and Physical 100?
“There are no openings at all now. They’re training hard, the younger athletes, and I hope they get to be under the spotlight and people would look them up,”Woo Jin-Yong, Champion of Netflix’s Physical 100 Season 1
Since winning Physical 100, Woo Jin-yong has continued to pursue his passion for fitness, becoming an active cross-fitter and associating himself with institutes like JD Crossfit and Crossfit NAMSAN. He frequently updates his rapidly growing 34.6K Instagram followers with behind-the-scenes pictures from the competition, as well as photos from his snowboarding events and other adventures.
With Physical 100’s first season now in the books, fans of the show are eagerly awaiting news of a second season. But regardless of whether or not the show returns, Woo Jin-yong’s victory will go down in history as a testament to his unwavering dedication and determination.
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