Youngsun “Sun” Lee

Graduate Assistant and PhD Student

My name is Yongsun “Sun” Lee from South Korea. I am doing my Doctorate in Kinesiology with the CYSD (Community Youth Sport Development) concentration under Dr. Michael Hemphill. I teach Taekwondo-based martial arts at a university, a high school, and a community-based martial arts program to teach life skills. My research interests lie in the area of sport pedagogy, social-emotional learning, best practices for sport-based youth development, and transfer of life skills learning. Mainly, I am interested to see how the paradox of martial arts (practicing fighting skills not to fight) promotes positive youth development. I like to see students smiling after making their own punch-kick sequences that they didn’t know they could do. Youth participation in organized martial arts has magical powers that enable students to make their life stories successful. Restorative justice pedagogy is a way of building bridges between martial arts participation and youth success. So my best practice for positive youth development? I circle up with kids first.