Professional Wrestling is a Sport


Cody Rhodes and the Young Bucks celebrate a victory at a live event.

Jylan Johnson, Staff Writer

Pro wrestling is one of the most misunderstood industries in the world. It is an industry of athletes who take serious bumps in and outside the wrestling ring. Wrestling takes real skill and real physicality, but this fact is overshadowed by the misconception that everything that happens in pro wrestling is fake and that it’s, “not even a real sport.” I believe that pro wrestling is more of a sport than the average eye realizes.

Admittedly, pro wrestling is scripted and therefore predetermined. The winners are chosen beforehand, so the athletes go in the match knowing how it ends. However, this does not mean that these matches are safe and predictable. The first and overall misconception is that the punches and slams do not hurt and that the matches are choreographed. In actuality, the matches are painful and are not choreographed the way people believe them to be. It’s believed that the wrestlers memorize every step, slam, jump, and punch in the match. In reality, the matches are loosely choreographed, meaning the wrestlers only know certain spots, a move or sequence of events in a wrestling match, that tell them how close to the end of the match they are. Everything else in the match is basically improv, running off of the psychology and chemistry that those two or more wrestlers share with each other. Memorizing every match would take a tremendous amount of time. It would not make sense for every match to be completely physically memorized when the wrestlers are wrestling for four to five days out of every week in different cities, states, countries and continents.

Given this, pro wrestling takes real skill and physicality. The bumps, collision to the wrestling mat, or any surface involving wrestling, are very serious business. If one slightly executes a move incorrectly, known as “botching” in wrestling terms, someone could be seriously injured. Also, a wrestler’s limit of physically helps them survive different circumstances in the wrestling world. In what I believe to be a sport, pro wrestling has many instances where a match does not follow its standard rules. There may be dangerous circumstances where wrestlers are able to use objects such as ladders, steel chairs, sledgehammers, bats, kendo sticks, barbed wire, thumbtacks, glass and even fire on one another. The options are endless. These circumstances, or match types, have different rules which would increase the risk for wrestlers.

It is also significant to know that although wrestlers are hurting each other intentionally, they are also protecting each other, making sure that their co workers doesn’t get seriously injured, concussed, or even paralyzed. Injuries are very common in pro wrestling. Wrestlers suffer all types of injuries including brain damage, ankle sprains, achilles tendon ruptures, shoulder fractures and the list goes on. The list resembles that of any other sport and may even be expanded based on a wrestler’s working conditions.

Although professional wrestling is scripted and the outcomes are predetermined, most of the bumps and bruises are very real. I believe that the sacrifices wrestlers make, including their brutal schedule and the beatings they take on a day to day basis, makes the industry worthy of being called a sport.