Ji-young Kim was born in Seoul, Korea. She graduated from the Vaganova Ballet Academy in Saint Petersburg, Russia and entered the Korea National Ballet as a principal dancer. She was active as a principal dancer in the Korea National Ballet and performed various repertoires from classical to modern ballet by 2001.
In 2002, she joined the Het National Ballet in Amsterdam, Netherlands as Grand Sujet and promoted to principal dancer in 2007 played starring roles. She re-entered the Korea National Ballet in July 2009, and participated in performances in the Het National Ballet in Amsterdam, Netherlands as a guest principal dancer and in the Korea National Ballet.
She was invited in Asian Arts Festival held in Japan in 1998 and Winners' Gala Festival, in 1998. When Queen Elizabeth, Queen of England, visited Korea in 1999, she performed KBS Welcome Concert, which was to welcome the queen. She danced in a performance called'Ballet stars who bring glory to Korea' which was sponsored by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Korea in 1999. She took the leading roles in Yuri Grigorovich's Spartacus, Swan Lake, The Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet and Raymonda the Korea National Ballet staged from 2000 to 2010. She has been invited in many performances at home and overseas such as International Dance Concours held in Nagoya, Japan in 2002, and greatly praised. In February 2010, Ji-young Kim interpreted Kitry in Don Quixote in Amsterdam with the Het Nationale Ballet, and in April she was invited to the Ballet Company of the Teatro dell'Opera di Roma in order to perform Don Quixote in Rome, Italy.