Park Min-su was the only Korean male artistic gymnast who advanced to the final at the 2018 World Championships - the 48th Artistic Gymnastics World Championships at Doha, held by la Fédération International de Gymnastique.
Q. You recently won a bronze medal at the 2018 Jakarta-Palembang Asian Games in the men’s team competition, and was ranked first in both the men’s team competition and the rings event at the Korea National Sports Festival (KNSF). How do you feel about this?
A. Even though I only received a bronze medal at the Asian Games, I was happy about that. However, I still felt disappointed for not accomplishing the goals that I had set for the games. Moreover, I am not satisfied about the results I received at the KNSF. I only placed second in the individual all round men’s event, and my aim was to receive a gold medal in that field. However, our team, Jeonbuk, was able to keep our record of having four consecutive victories, and I had also maintained a winning streak of two games in the Rings event. Although I feel that I could have done much better, I am still really happy as an individual that I have made the following achievements.
Q. Even though your specialty is horizontal bar gymnastics, you have also won gold medals twice in a row for the rings event at the KNSF. What is your secret behind receiving such a high score in a field that is not your expertise?
A. My specialty in gymnastics is originally the individual all round and horizontal bar gymnastics, as you have also mentioned. But, as I am also highly ranked in the rings event in Korea, I think that is also one of my own turfs. So there wasn’t much difficulty in receiving a high score at the KNSF. Since I had won a gold medal in the rings event last year, I wanted to defend my title this year. For the horizontal bar event, although it is one of my specialties, I failed to qualify for the Asian Games and the KNSF due to my mistakes. I will practice harder and make up for it in the future.
Q. You have done gymnastics for 13 years since you started when you were 12-years-old. As a gymnast, when were your happiest and the most regretful moments during your athletic career?
A. I was very happy when I was chosen as a member of the national team. Of course, winning medals and prizes are meaningful to me. However, when I became a gymnast that represents my own country, I realized choosing to be a gymnast was one of the best choices I had ever made, and I do not regret this choice at all. But as an individual, I feel I missed a lot of opportunities to enjoy my school life, but those losses are what I should bear and endure as an athlete.
Q. You wrote the words, “God bless my life. I am the Best. Korea No.1” on your social media account. This was referred to as image training. Do you often go through image training?
A. There is a saying that goes like this: “If you say good things, good things will come to you.” I try to do image training as often as I can, since it is helpful in recovering my own confidence. And “Korea No.1” is not conceding to the fact that I am the best in Korea, but that it is my goal to become that someday.
Q. As an alumni of Hanyang University (HYU), could you give some tips for HYU’s student athletes and other students attending the university?
A. Even though it has only been two years since I graduated, there are some things that you can only do when you are a university student. Some students give up what they want to achieve because of the fear that they will never be able to achieve that. Initially, so did I. Of course, sometimes one can fail after trying. But, for me, failure gave precious experiences in my life, thus I want everyone to challenge what he or she wants without worrying about it.