After suffering a serious knee injury several years ago that forced him into hiatus, Golden Child‘s Joochan opened up about the difficulties of recovery in a new YouTube interview with KPOP IDOL OLYMPIC.
These days, Joochan is bright, confident, and healthy. However, things haven’t always gone his way. Back in December 2018, Golden Child fans were shocked to learn that Joochan would be halting all activities after suffering a serious injury.
In his interview with KPOP IDOL OLYMPIC, Joochan revealed how the injury occurred. The star explained that Golden Child was preparing for an end-of-year Gayo stage at the time, and that he was “trying to do [his] best” while rehearsing choreography. However, while on a staircase on his way back to the dorm, Joochan says his “whole body became relaxed and all the tension was gone“, presumably leading him to fall and become injured.
A person’s body can slack off a bit. So, it happened on the staircase.
Joochan went on to explain that his anterior cruciate ligament (one of the key knee joint ligaments) was torn in the injury. On top of that, his medial collateral ligament and cartilage were also damaged. According to medical information, many doctors describe multiple torn knee ligaments as a “grade four” injury—the most severe level of damage.
As such, Joochan unsurprisingly said that the injury required a “big surgery“. However, despite the severity of his condition, the main vocalist actually didn’t want to have surgery at first. Why? To keep working hard for his fellow members.
The year-end was not far away. It was less than a week away, so I told them that I didn’t want surgery. I wanted to go on stage after taking some painkillers. And after that, I’ll have the surgery.
Thankfully, Joochan’s doctors communicated how essential surgery would be to his health. Joochan revealed that if he didn’t have surgery, his “every day life would be affected“—not just his performances. So, the star reluctantly went ahead with surgery.
But Joochan went on to explain that the whole ordeal “really stressed [him] out a lot” because he felt blame at not being able to participate in the end-of-year performances. Not only were the other members practicing hard, “lots of effort was put into” the stage by staff.
I was so sorry… because of me, everything had to be changed. That really stressed me out a lot. I blamed myself a lot.
Opening up about his rehabilitation process, Joochan says the year ahead was difficult for him, especially after his doctor told him rehabilitation would take over a year. In past interviews, the Golden Child star told fans he was “focused solely on recovering“, undergoing physiotherapy and working hard to improve his health. Talking to KPOP IDOL OLYMPIC, he reiterated that he “put everything into rehabilitation in the year 2019“. Naturally, it wasn’t easy.
Honestly, it was very difficult for me. It was very difficult.
But, Joochan worked hard despite the difficulties and was even able to release a solo digital single two months after his injury. Finally, when Joochan went on their summer 2019 Japan tour, he was finally able to join the rest of the group for OT10 performances.
On making his comeback after a long road to recovery, Joochan revealed “it was awesome“. The starlet says he was working “like a crazy person” to make up for everything he missed and ensure he wouldn’t get hurt again. Joochan says he “wanted to make the stage mine“—and he’s still doing that to this day.
Other members keep looking out for me. When I see them checking up on me, I become emotional. Tears can’t help but fall. It was a stage that I’ve wanted to be on.