SEVENTEEN‘s leader, S.Coups, has been exempted from serving in the South Korean military. This exemption is due to a severe knee injury he sustained last year.

S.Coups underwent anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction and lateral collateral ligament reconstruction in his left knee due to a tear in the anterior cruciate ligament. It was a major surgery, and he has been receiving rehabilitation treatment for a long period since last year. It is because of this that S.Coups was classified as Grade 5 in his physical examination,” his agency, PLEDIS Entertainment, said in a statement.

Understand Knee Ligament Injuries (ACL, PCL, MCL, LCL)

Being in Grade 5 exempts him from active duty. He is required to serve only in military affairs during wartime situations. His exemption is crucial as individuals born in 1995, like him, must enlist for active duty within the year.

PLEDIS Entertainment had previously announced that S.Coups would resume promoting with SEVENTEEN. “As a result of consistent treatment and ample rest, the injured area has somewhat improved,” they wrote. “Recently, he has received medical advice that it is okay to fulfill his scheduled activities as long as it does not strain his body excessively.”

ACL (Anterior Cruciate Ligament) LCL (Lateral Collateral Ligament) Tear and Repair

How are exemptions determined?

In South Korea, a physical examination determines military service exemptions and assignments. This process assigns military grades from 1 to 7. Grades 1 to 3 indicate fitness for active duty. Grade 4 is for those who qualify for supplemental service. Grade 6 leads to exemption from military service, and Grade 7 is for those who need a re-examination due to health issues. Exemptions also go to individuals with exceptional talents or debilitating health conditions.

Grade 5 in South Korea’s military classification generally means assignment to alternative service. This is instead of active duty due to physical or health conditions. There are instances where those classified as Grade 5 may still be exempted from all forms of military service. This includes alternative or social service. The decision is based on specific circumstances or additional evaluations of their condition. Each case is evaluated individually. Exemptions or assignments can vary based on the health issues’ nature and severity.

EXEMPT from military service?

Reality is reality

This policy aligns with broader policies detailed on the Yeson Hospital bulletin board. This platform facilitates e-consultations. Korean netizens can seek advice from medical specialists. According to one specialist, the Ministry of National Defense Ordinance No. 950 updated on February 1, 2018, says those who have undergone anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction are classified as Grade 5. This classification means they’re exempted from military service regardless of the surgery’s outcome. 

The specialist’s explanation, dated July 29, 2018, notes that the exemption remains due to the knee’s vulnerability to further damage and arthritis. “In our experience, even if the patient insists on joining the military or conscripted police, life will not be easy because of the injured knee. In that case, colleagues and superiors will also have a hard time. The desire to fulfill one’s national defense duty deserves praise, but reality is reality.”


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S.Coups will participate in SVT’s next comeback

PLEDIS Entertainment responded to reports about the group’s comeback in April. “We will make an official announcement regarding SEVENTEEN‘s precise comeback schedule at a later date.”

Regardless of the exact comeback date, S.Coups will be part of it alongside bandmate Jeonghan, who also took a break for ankle surgery. They will participate in the group’s other scheduled activities, including their upcoming concerts in Seoul and Japan. – K-Pop News Writer

Featured Image: S.Coups’s injury was so severe he needed two surgeries to fix it. Hence the exemption. Source: X/@svtcontents.