International Journal of Sports Science

p-ISSN: 2169-8759    e-ISSN: 2169-8791

2022;  12(2): 43-51


Received: Feb. 13, 2022; Accepted: Mar. 4, 2022; Published: Mar. 24, 2022


The Role of Sports in the Development of Leadership Skills in South Korea

Kim Dong Hak

University Lecturer, Hanyang Univercity, Dept. College of Sports and Art, Republic of Korea

Correspondence to: Kim Dong Hak, University Lecturer, Hanyang Univercity, Dept. College of Sports and Art, Republic of Korea.


Copyright © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Scientific & Academic Publishing.

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY).


Understanding of leadership within sports context has significantly developed for a long time and has moved from the application of global leadership models to the development and implementation specific models and approaches. Both sports and team activities provide opportunities to the sports men and women to come up with strategies of winning. Leaders always have specific goal in mind. They come up with policies that will ensure that the work being done is effective and efficient. This research looks at the role of sports as far as the development of leadership skill in South Korea is concerned. There is a detailed introduction of the concept of sports and how it significantly plays a role in developing leadership skills. Research objectives have been used to help the researcher to focus on the key variables. Literature review has also been used to gain a better understanding of the topic based on previous researches carried out by other individuals and institutions. The study employed a positivist research philosophy and uses non-experimental research design to statistically describe the role played by sports in the development of leadership skills. Data is analyzed using SPSS and a detailed discussion is provided before giving a well-summarized conclusion about the topic of study.

Keywords: SPSS (Statistical Product and Service Solutions), USTA (United States Tennis Association), CFO (Chief Financial Officer), Covid-19 (Coronavirus Disease)

Cite this paper: Kim Dong Hak, The Role of Sports in the Development of Leadership Skills in South Korea, International Journal of Sports Science, Vol. 12 No. 2, 2022, pp. 43-51. doi: 10.5923/j.sports.20221202.03.

1. Introduction

The interaction between sports and the development of leadership and social skills within a population is a common practice used by government and community leaders both locally and internationally. Sports are believed to nurture physical and mental talents, physical fitness, sportsmanship, and team-building within a community and society. Sports have been used throughout history as a means of recreation, entertainment or as a means to gain political influence and support as evidenced by the sports competitions held in the ancient colosseums of Italy, Greece and other recorded early societies. The Korean government views sports programs as a vital enabler to create and foster community growth and the development of good citizenship nurtured through local and national competitive sports teams and sports’ clubs. (Thomas & Cheese, 2005). To be specific, when the state puts emphasis on sporting activities for both enjoyment and promotion of values, the status and image of the country is improved both locally among its citizens, as well as internationally among nations with like values. That said, there has been an attempt by various political leaders to associate themselves with high-profile sports figures and teams that have gained international recognition. These sports teams and groups have produced leaders who are well respected within their communities and country and have made tremendous contributions within their society and the international world community (Waldman & Kobar, 2004). A number of teams and programs that foster competitive sports have emerged and gained national attention and support from both the private sector as well as government leaders. The government supports both individuals and teams that have shown great interest in building character and leadership capacity among team members. This has led to the creation of national programs to foster the success of elite sports for participation in World and international competitions and events. Though there has been reduced interest in the government circles on mass sporting development, it is essential to note that commitment to these elite sport programs is still evident and directly related to the success of improving national heritage and respect within the international community. (Antonakis, & Atwater, 2002). The government, as well as other stakeholders, have directed their efforts in utilizing sports as a vehicle for social development and pride within their communities and nationally. Consequently, great leaders have emerged from the sporting sectors who have greatly impacted the Korean general society through their knowledge, athletic skills, and sportsmanship. This research seeks to establish the role of sports in the development of leadership skills in South Korea.

1.1. Background Information

Sports plays a significant role in developing future leaders. South Korea has greatly benefited from sports’ athletes, both men and women, who have turned out to be great leaders within their teams, communities and in the society. Different sports have well organized rules and regulations that guide the sports team members during their training sessions and when they are participating. According to Waldman and Kobar (2004), the rules are meant to guide both the sports event as well as team members accordingly. Growing up in such an environment means that they become believers in the rules, regulations, and teamwork. They are therefore more comfortable fitting into their society. Although sport coaches appear to be under-recognized, they play a significant role in molding leaders through coaching, mentoring and providing a positive example for leadership development. Sports leaders achieve this through cultivating the tenets of leadership by serving as positive role models and providing the necessary mentorship experiences to players. Connaughton, Lawrence, and Ruben (2003) point out that through their positive leadership roles, captains and the rest of the players are adequately empowered and from them, there emerges leaders who ensure that there is a continuous cycle of creation of efficient leaders who can bring about positive change in the society through different sectors (Danish, 2002). However, the sector is faced with a number of challenges that for a long time has hampered their efforts. Policies and efforts need to be put in place by all the stakeholders to ensure that sports takes its place in the country. Revitalization of Korean sports for all participants relies on both rapid economic growth and improving the living conditions for those who have decided to follow the path of sports (Cronin and Allen, 2018). There is also a need for a dramatic change that will turn people from direct spectators to people who can actively take part in sports, which can helping in molding their character and building their confidence. Key stakeholders need to revitalize sports as a basic prerequisite within educational organizations and local communities to enhance development and participation in professional sports. The government has played a leading role by identifying people’s demands for sporting activities and has acted accordingly in promoting a variety of relevant policies that are geared towards promoting sports for all.

1.2. Research Objectives

• To establish the role of Sports in the Development of leadership skills in South Korea.
• To find out how organized sports team participants differ in their leadership skills from those who did not participate in similar teams.
• To determine how increasing levels of participation in tertiary institution-sponsored sports teams is associated with increasing levels of leadership skills.
• To establish how the nature of sports have an effect on the level of leadership skills developed.

2. Literature Review

The question of whether leadership can be acquired through learning has attracted some amount of attention in both academy and practitioner’s grounds (MacIntosh & Spence, 2012). The view of a number of influential management educators is that the topic has been well talked about by researchers According to Smith, Arthur, Hardy, Callow and Williams, (2013) a number of facts about leadership skills can be well-enhanced through the use of various learning experiences. In addition to that, most researchers suggest that leadership skills can be acquired as part of practical, experimental, as well as educational program. When talking about the development of leadership skills, most educators refer to traditional and faculty-geared educational programs, while people from other institutions of learning point out that programs are instrumental in the development of leadership (Antonakis, & Atwater, 2002).
Organized athletics teams provide students with various experiential programs that, according to most researchers, contribute towards development of leadership. Sports play a great role in the development of skills and values that are essential in various facets of life (MacIntosh & Spence, 2012). The participation of athletes among college students is closely associated to the growth of social and interpersonal skills, as well as leadership capabilities. According to research, some of these skills entail the ability to work and give results under pressure and be able to solve problems and meet expected deadlines. They can also meet goals, communicate effectively and handle success and failures in a constructive manner. In sports, team captains are most likely to develop enhanced interpersonal characteristics. They also have enhanced verbal interactions which helps in molding behavioral elements among the teammates. Early athletic participation is likely to contribute towards a later success in leadership and a good reinforcement of essential social skills -Danish (2002).
According to the research of Dobosz and Beaty (1999), they found that within a sampling of 60 high school students there was a significantly higher level of leadership capability compared to the non-athletes. On their part, MacIntosh and Spence (2012), found that high school senior students, who took part in sports, were better at getting-along with different kinds of people and could relate well in any circumstances. This was seen as critical skills that are necessary for leadership in a diverse group. Aries, McCarthy, Salovey, & Banaji, (2004), looked at the difference between athletes and non-athletes at highly-rated colleges. According to their observations, there was high commitment among the athletes. The athletes also had a high perception of their general self and termed themselves as socially skilled. They were also confident and displayed promising skills to be future leaders (Aries, McCarthy, Salovey, & Banaji, 2004).
According to Aries, McCarthy, Salovey & Banaji (2004), not all studies are able to demonstrate a good correlation between participation within an athletic team and the development of leadership skills. Sports participation has little effect on self-image. It has also been discovered that it does not reduce prejudice and is not required in the development of leadership. In general, the empirical literature does not in any way support a cause effects-relationship between social competence and participation in sporting activities. According to Doh (2003), while high school sports leaders rank learning life skills highly, they still believe that young people need to be active in sports. They agreed that ranking is not enough and that there has to be some effort aimed at improving the general performance of an individual (Lesyk, 2000). DeMoulin’s (2002) study was involved in the study of a high school seniors. He discovered that those who took part in well-organized sports scored slightly lower as far as maturity is concerned (Doh, 2003).
In reviewing the recommendations from the previous studies regarding the relationship between sports and leadership development, some measures that have been put in place need to be well harmonized so that they align with objectives of the sports ministry. Other measures include training of coaches to enable them to gain leadership skills which they will in turn use to mentor other players (Antonakis, & Atwater, 2002). According to previous researchers, sports play a great role in building and defining leaders. Effectively designed leadership development programs and activities will present some learning challenges. It is therefore important to provide solutions that are broad-based so that the challenges are handled in a collective way. In most cases, the challenges presented in different sports fields have common root causes, and therefore common solutions can be used to solve a myriad of challenges (Bortoli, Messina, Zorba, & Robazza, 2012).
According to Bortoli, Messina, Zorba, & Robazza (2012), paradigm on sports has started to change from the perspective of ‘development of sports’ to ‘development through sports’. Therefore, programs have emerged both in international and domestic arenas. In efforts to enhance international cooperation through sports, the Dream together program was established to share sports experiences in Korea from the past one decade with other developing countries (Bortoli, Messina, Zorba, & Robazza, 2012). These kinds of programs are put in place to enhance international cooperation and build positive relationships through sports. However, there are limitations because they tend to focus on elite sports and take the approach of ‘development of sports’. Due to these forms of limitations, it is always recommended that international cooperation programs through sports need to focus more on sports and leadership for all (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). Past successes in elite sports competitions have put Korea on the map as a sporting powerhouse. Sport team members who have participated in these successes are celebrated both locally and internationally. Most of them have become great leaders in various sectors of society and within the business world. The successes have been celebrated because they have generated an out-come-based sporting culture which mainly focuses on how leadership is nurtured through sports. According to Santos et al., (2018), it is important for the government to make efforts that are aimed at fostering participation in international cooperation activities through participation in sporting events. By doing this, the country will become a genuinely advanced country that focuses on sports for all and the of ‘development through sports’ will be an accepted performance goal (Bortoli, Messina, Zorba, & Robazza, 2012).
There are three important phrases regarding experience-based learning. They include preparaing, developing and preserving. After a thorough preparation, there is need for evaluation and assessment of the personal values (strengths and weaknesses), as well as learning styles. Accordingly, developing entails putting into practice the skills while preserving involves feedback and revision of the learning objectives (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). Based on preservation factors, good leadership development programs encourage learners to reflect on their leadership experiences and processes both within the class premises and outside the classroom. And while the typical sports team experience is likely to develop leadership related skills, systematic attention is paid to preparation as well as preservation Bredemeier & Shields (2006), in research that focuses on sports as a social experience as well as character development, sports plays a great role in character development. However, this can only be possible when coaches deliberately aim to do so, and are well informed about the educational processes that are involved (Podsakoff, MacKenzie, Lee, & Podsakoff, 2003).
The opinion that classroom teaching on abstract leadership construct is lacking the ability to be transferred into the workplace, is the same as those who believe that skills that are learned in competitive athletic sporting contest cannot be transferred to a corporate setting. This basically means that managerial and leadership skills may not be outrightly developed in isolation of context. Athletes may only apply their skills to sports and may not practice them in their own work places (Podsakoff, MacKenzie, Lee, & Podsakoff, 2003). It is therefore essential that human resource managers should always consider the context of the issues during decision making (Antonakis, d'Adda, Weber, & Zehnder, 2015). Experiences in recruitment in campuses indicate that most athletes are recruited based on the fact that their experience increases their leadership skills, especially when they work as a team and motivate each other (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). For instance, an executive recruiter at CFOs pointed out that he was interested in individuals who were in athletics at a higher level. In this particular study, the results cautioned recruiters, as well as other people, who were involved in personnel decisions against using such thoughts as an indicator of good leadership skills. Through showing preferences among the athletes, there is a possibility of bypassing people who are well suited for the positions. This research also pointed out that sports develop skills in some people while in others, it has no effect and this included female and male (Rehman and Shields, 2017).
Most studies clearly demonstrate a relationship between athletic team participation and leadership development. However, according to Doh (2003), the overall empirical literature does not support a cause-effect relationship between participation in sports and the general social competence. Bruner et la., (2017) point out that while high school coaches rank learning skills as two (out of fifteen) reasons they would want people to take part in sports. They agree that in reality sports contributes less towards social competence. Blinde & Greendorfer (2002) points out that student athlete may find it difficult to interact with their peers, especially those who are not in their groups. According to Cho (2008) transfer effects from the playing field to the bigger game of life are two different things.

2.1. Case Studies in the Sport Context

In the context of sports, the case studies in areas like marketing, sponsorship, community development, as well as organizational behavior are perfect examples that can be used. For instance, there was a case study that examined diversity and leader member exchange in intercollegiate athletics. The study group consisted of people who worked as grounds crewmembers for a baseball team (Podsakoff, MacKenzie, Lee & Podsakoff, 2003). Relationships between supervisor and subordinates were reviewed among diverse group[s] of individuals so as to improve organizational environment behavioral within the work place.
Another case study focused on the United States Tennis Association (USTA). The researchers examined the strategic planning of the USTA to fortify its system that develops players’ careers as professional athletes (Waldman, & Kobar, 2004). Other scholars have examined a social media site which can show some positive aspects of marketing strategies (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). Social media campaigns are a great tool to build relationships between sports organizations and fans or other stakeholders because they increase fundraising for charitable fundraising (Rehman and Shields, 2017). The case study focused on a golf tournament organizer, Tampa Tourneys Facebook page, which showed the campaign’s success (Hambrick, Mahoney, & Calabrese, 2012). Similarly, a case study was used for meeting organizational marketing objectives. Olejniczak & Aicher (2012) stated that a megaevent such as the NFL Super Bowl has extensive marketing, business, and sponsorship opportunities. According to Waldman & Kobar, (2004), the case of a consumer packaged product, such as food, clothing, or a household product with the Super Bowl activities can generate countless revenue. The researchers explored common objectives for sponsors, how they increased their products and brand images, as well as what factors motivated consumers’ intent to purchase products. Moreover, a case study article by Sparvero, Warner, & Pratt (2012) reviewed functions among public relations, crisis management, sport’s finance, and facility and event operations. The article explained how the Lance Armstrong Foundation’s (LAF) revenue and public image has been affected by Armstrong’s public image and career downturn (Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, (MCST, 2013). When his 17 career wins is sports bicycle competitions and his image were popular, the more successful the Foundation raised financial support than when he retired and had a professional scandal. Furthermore, a case study was utilized to explore an individual’s behavior and leadership type. White (2012) monitored how an individual’s behavior can be linked to leadership through life experiences. Although Grover Flanks, a former MLB star, garnered enough support from fans and the local community to house his minor league team in a new stadium, his bad behavior resulted in fines and suspensions which caused his team to lose credibility and financial support. Consequently the team may lose their stadium in the future (Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, (MCST, 2013).

2.2. Sports and Team Participation

While it is possible that the sporting fields and arenas could serve as a venue for experience-based learning of leadership skills, several of the key elements necessary for learning are not present. Thomas & Cheese (2005) outline three key phases of experience-based learning: (1) preparing, (2) developing, and (3) preserving. Proper preparation requires assessment of strengths and weaknesses, personal values, and learning style. Developing involves the continued practice of the skills, while preserving involves feedback and revision of learning objectives to reinforce learning and performance. Consistent with the preservation factor, Connaughton, Lawrence, & Ruben (2003) point out that good leadership development programs encourage the students to reflect on their leadership processes both inside and outside of the classroom (Rehman & Shields, 2017). We argue that while the typical sports team experience may develop leadership-related skills, systematic attention is not paid to preparation or preservation. Bredemeier & Shields (2006) focuses on sports participation as a social experience and character development, which surmised conclude that “sports can build character, but only if coaches deliberately seek to do so and are adequately informed regarding the educational processes required” (Antonakis, d'Adda, Weber, & Zehnder, 2015). Cho (2008) argues that anecdotal evidence from study participants during debriefing revealed that feedback from coaches centered on sports-related skills. Even participants designated as a team captain rarely received feedback from a coach regarding their leadership role. If anything, team leaders reported that they tried to model their own leadership behaviors for those of the team coach (Waldman, & Kobar, 2004).
Leadership behaviors developed through sports may not be transferable to classroom and life tasks, much less the boardroom. Just as the classroom teaching of abstract leadership constructs is criticized for its lack of transferability to the workplace, so too are the skills learned in a competitive athletic contest which may not transfer to a corporate setting. McKenna (2004) argues that managerial skills “cannot be developed in isolation of context”. Athletes may only see their field- developed skills as applicable to sports, and therefore do not use or practice them in the workplace (Bruner et al., 2017).
Human resources managers, especially those involved with campus recruiting should consider the results of this study in their decision-making (Waldman, & Kobar, 2004). The authors’ experiences with campus recruiters reflects that many of them put a high premium on recruiting college athletes because they believe that experience increases their leadership skills, especially teamwork and motivation skills. An executive recruiter of CFOs stated that he looks for “people who have been in athletics at a high level”. Recruiters, and other persons making personnel decisions, using past behaviors as an indicator of these or any other leadership skills are therefore cautioned (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). By showing a preference for athletes, persons who would be a good fit in the job may be bypassed unnecessarily. Further research on this topic will focus on why sports develops skills in certain types of persons and not others, and its effect on skills not measured in an assessment center (Waldman, & Kobar, 2004).

3. Methodology

3.1. Research Philosophy

The research philosophy is guided by the research approach. This study employed a positivist research philosophy because it has a well formulated framework for collection and analysis of data (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). Data is also presented based on objective methods. In this study, the use of deductive reasoning approach was greatly useful for the entire research study because it is built on a principle in that, a hypothesis was used as a starting point of the research before settling on the data collected to verify the theory or hypothesis. The method is appropriate for the aims and objectives of this research because it assists in finding out the link between varied constructs like “men’s or women’s leadership” as a dependent variable and other independent variables like “sports development”.

3.2. Research Design

The research resolved to use non-experimental research design. A descriptive research method was settled on due to a number of reasons. For example, the method helped to statistically describe the role played by sports in the development of leadership skills in sport participants in South Korea. The nature of descriptive research that was selected for this study suits the method. The reason for the selection of the survey method was to assist during the collection of extensive data in a quantitative format. This would then make it possible to easy carrying out of the process of analysis (Bruner et al., 2017).

3.3. Data Collection

The selected mode of data collection was the use of questionnaires and the approached is termed as straight forward. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, the survey questionnaires were embedded on freemium online survey tools. In this research, was used to help in collecting data. A hyperlink to the survey questions was thereafter directed to the targeted respondents through their email addresses or through their social media accounts. The participants who agreed to participate in this research study were requested to clink the link that enabled them to access and fill in the questionnaire survey (Arthur, Bastardoz & Eklund, 2017). According to the researcher’s estimation, the entire process was not supposed to take more than 15 minutes due to the limited timeline that the researcher had. The entire survey was limited to four questions that are closed-ended where themes would be formulated from the answers received. The themes obtained would then be analyzed.

3.4. Data Collection Method and Sampling

In this study, the sample used was made up of 200 participants. The participants were drawn from various heads of sports departments from universities across South Korea. Due to limited time and the current restrictions on movements and policies that have been adopted by many organizations regarding the spread of Covid-19, snowballing as well as convenience sampling methods were settled on. In this case, a few heads of sports departments in South Korea nominated others in their professional network who satisfactorily fulfilled the recruitment criteria to take part in the process of data collection. The few were requested to share the link to their social media networks. According to the research, data collection in South Korea regions is mainly dependent on the nature of relationship building. This basically implies that the targeted participants can be efficiently recruited through social media network.

4. Data Analysis

For analysis purposes, Windows 23.0 Statistical Product and Service Solutions (SPSS) was the means through which statistical analysis of data was carried out. The method was selected because it is simple and straight forward as it is characterized by entry of data into the software before application of the applicable methods of data analysis. In this research, analysis method proposed included frequency analysis, descriptive analysis and reliability testing. As far as reliability testing is concerned, it helped in the determination of the level of consistency of questionnaire through the use of Cronbach α coefficient test. Descriptive analysis assisted with the analysis of the demographic data of the participants is concerned. On its part, frequency analysis assisted in the evaluation of information or data to examine the proposed hypothesis.
Does sports contribute to the development of sport participant’s leadership?
When the question was directed to the participants to establish the level of contribution of sports in leadership, 40 out of the 200 total participants agree that indeed sports plays a positive role in the development of sports leadership. This is 20% of the respondents. 120 participants strongly agreed to the fact, a representation of 60% of the participants. Only 10 participants were undecided, which represents 5% of the participants. On the other hand, 20 participants disagreed with the statement. This represents 10% of the total respondents while 10 respondents “totally disagreed”, representing 5% of the total respondents.
Overall, 160 out the possible 200 participants agreed that indeed sports greatly contributes towards the development of sports leadership. 10 respondents were undecided while 30 participants disagreed.
Organized sports team participants provide good leadership skills compared to those who were not in similar teams
According to the responses abstained from the participants, most of them “strongly agreed” that good leadership skills was displayed by team members who had well organized teams. This was represented by 96 out of 200 participants. This represented 48% of the total participants. 44 respondents said they “agree”, representing 22% of the total participants. Only 20 participants were undecided, represented by 10%. On the other hand, 30 participants representing 15% “disagreed” while 10 participants “strongly disagreed”, representing a mere 5% of the total participants.
Based of the above analysis, it can therefore be said that 140 out of the possible 200 participants agreed that organized sports team participants provide good leadership skills compared to those who were not in similar teams. Only 20 participants disagreed with the statement while the remaining 40 participants felt that organized sports team participants did not provide good leadership skills compared to those who were not in similar teams and the information is represented in the bar graph below:
Increasing levels of participation in tertiary institution-sponsored sports teams is associated with increasing levels of leadership skills in the outside world
A majority of the respondents (90 out of 200) “strongly agreed” that the increasing levels of participation in tertiary institution-sponsored sports teams is closely associated with increasing levels of leadership skills in the outside world. This represented 45% of the total participants. Accordingly 67 participants “agreed” with the statement, representing 33.5% of the total participants. Summarily, participants who were in agreement with the statement were 157 out of the possible 200 participants.
On the other hand 7 participants were non-committal. They remained undecided, a figure that represented 3.5%. Those who “disagreed” were 25 in number and this was 12.5% of the participants and those who “strongly disagreed” were 11 in number, represented by 5.5%. In total, the respondents who disagreed with the statement were 36 out of the possible 200.
The nature of the sport have an effect on the level of leadership skills developed
The nature of sports determined the level of leadership skills developed. As indicated in the table and graph, sports that involved a bigger number of people is associated with leadership skills development. Team sport recorded the highest number of participants who agreed that it contributed to the development of leadership skills development. It was represented by 145 participants and this was 72.5% of the total number of the participants. Partner sports had 25 respondents, represented by 12.5% of the total participants. Extreme sports, which are activities that are associated with high degree of risks was represented by 20 participants which is 10% of the total participants. Individual sports recorded the lowest with 10 participants representing 5% of the total number of participants.

5. Discussion and Recommendations

5.1. Discussion

From the analysis, it is evident that there is a strong link between sports and leadership. Sports plays a great role in molding team members into becoming great leaders in various sectors across the country. Sports is linked in shaping the personality of the players. When they work as a team and listen to the instructions that are given, they develop character wise and eventually they apply the skills acquired in various sectors where they end up in. Sports involve specific rules and regulations that guide the players. When sports participants confine themselves within the established rules and regulations, their thinking and organization is positively developed. They end up building their capabilities and knowledge around the observation of the positive rules. Consequently, a generation that adheres to the established rules and one that is ready to lead through the enacted guidelines is made. Sports builds psychology in life and through this positivity, team spirit is built that is rich in leadership skills, team work, mutual respect and fair play. These characteristics reflect positive traits and attitudes that one does not give up and provides the required focus in various facets of life.
Sports has proven to be a great leveler and has enabled participants to understand their strengths and abilities. It also helps in understanding processes and the expected results and through sports, the value of planning is harnessed. We also learn that earnestness and sincerity are important virtues as they are taught and acquired in the process of training in a team setting and club environment. Through them we learn to stay focused and ready to put into practice what we learn and acquire. Through sports, team members have proven to develop their observations and analysis skills. Sports entails a lot of issues that involve reasoning of the mind. These skills are developed and build by sports participants. Such sports team members have turned out to be great leaders in various sectors of life.
A lot of psychology is applied in sports. Psychology in sports enables the players to develop positive attitudes and therefore, they are ready to face life with a positive mind knowing that success is possible whatever the situation. There is respect for the opponent, a factor that is essential in creating an understanding between parties in whatever situation that one can find themselves in. Sports also instills a “winning instinct” and an attitude of never giving up. From this analysis, it is also evident that there is always the fear of losing and these acts as a motivating factor towards attaining the set goals and objectives in any sector. Sports participants are therefore able to apply this concept to achieve their desired goals in their areas of jurisdiction. An attitude of never being unduly bothered about the resultant consequences is built well in a sports setting and in a team. In most cases, sports team members face competitions and in a competition, there is always a winner and a looser. The players are prepared in advance to accept this fact. By understanding this fact, they develop a positive body language that is resistant to any negative eventualities. This has helped sports team members turn out to be great leaders in various sectors of life.
The participants in the study pointed to an overwhelming contribution of sports to the development of leadership skills. Their answers are a clear indication that sports is an important activity that should be given all the necessary support because through sports, leaders are created and good leaders are associated with development and growth of the economy. The significance of sports in South Korea is tremendous.
It was also discovered that good leadership skills are best-nurtured in a team setting compared to where there is no well-organized teamwork. In a team setting, there are rules and regulations that guide their conduct and sportsmanship. When they continuously observe these rules and regulations they become accustomed to them and they end up applying the skills acquired in their daily lives and in various sectors. Sports setting that are not well-organize have no rules and regulations that guide them into attaining their goals and objectives therefore, little is acquired in terms of leadership skills. In situations where there institutions step in to sponsor the teams and organized sports groups, there is always an increased level of notoriety and positive support. Skills are easily nurtured and the associated benefits of working in a team setting is acquired by the participants. Consequently, more leaders are created in this process.

5.2. Recommendations

Sports has proven to be a significant factor in developing good leaders and the development of a positive attitude toward the nation and the citizens. Sports has proven to produce important personalities that contribute to the socio-political and economic development of South Korea. It is therefore important that measures are put in place to ensure that sporting activities are supported by all the stakeholders to ensure that the contributions of sports permanently instituted within the culture and continuously supported by government and educational leaders. Leaders have emerged from sports sectors and they have ended up making bigger contributions in the society, than many major political and business leaders.
From the analysis, it is clear that the nature of sports also matters. Team sports play a great role in character development compared to individual and partner sports. It is in organized teams and competitions that facilitate the evolution of team work and a positive attitude to life’s challenges. This therefore means that stakeholders need to channel their efforts and support to sports such as soccer, volleyball, baseball, and basketball among other sports to create greater impact in the lives of the participants and observers. By doing so, the influence will be felt in a bigger way.
The revelation obtained from the research is that generally, sports is a crucial element in the life of a person. People need to be encouraged to participate in sports. Apart from gaining Healthwise, sports has proven to contribute greatly to the general physical and mental well-being of a person. The thinking capacity, analysis skills, the aspect of fair play, never giving up attitude, respect for others, winning instinct, and fear of losing among others are well nurtured in sporting activities. Parents and guardians need to encourage their children to join sports because it enable a person to develop holistically.

6. Conclusions

In conclusion, it is evidence that sports plays a major role in the lives and development of future leaders and the Korean civilization as a whole. Through sports, leaders have emerged who have contributed greatly towards the socio-economic development of the Korean society. As one of the significant sectors of the Korean society, there is need to put in place measures that will be geared towards improving its performance so that the benefits are felt across the areas and institutionalized in policy and funding programs. Working towards a common goal as a member of a team will facilitate the process of achieving set goals and objectives. Sports has proven to work under rules and regulations that help in the realization of targets in a disciplined manner that lead to growth in various sectors. The leaders that are created through organized sports have influenced the tremendous development. It is essential that society is encouraged to embrace sports and to support sporting activities in whichever way possible to enhance positive development of leadership skills among the current and future generation. There are challenges to the fulfillment of the true potential of sports. Cases of racism, hatred and violence in sports during sporting events have been a stumbling block. Organizations, management and players need to do everything to combat the ills and achieve the positive power of the sector. The role of the stakeholders is to fight the abuses and put in place good governance, integrity and transparency.


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