Over the past few decades, most of us have been exposed to the world of wrestling in some way. Some will have spent their childhood watching it and collecting action figures of legendary wrestlers like Hulk Hogan, The Rock, and The Undertaker. Some may also have played the many wrestling video games on the market and, quite foolishly, attempted to recreate moves they’d seen. Many others will simply have friends or family interested in wrestling to some degree. Wherever you fell on this broad spectrum, and if you’ve not been involved in the world of wrestling for a long time, it’s still very easy to get into. For complete newcomers to the sport, it might be an intimidating time watching your first wrestling match or trying to learn about all of the history and drama surrounding the sport, and that’s why we’ve decided to put together this useful guide to get you on the right track.
What Are The Origins Of Wrestling?
As many will know, pro wrestling is not something new. In fact, wrestling dates back to ancient Greece over five millennia ago, in which competitors would fight in hand-to-hand combat, attempting to grapple each other and force the other to submit. It wasn’t until the 1800s that the world of wrestling became more about showmanship rather than actual physical combat and prowess. Wrestling actually got picked up by the carnival circuit, with members of the public taking on professional wrestlers to see if they had what it takes to bring them down. Of course, as is the way of the carnival lifestyle, not everything is what it seems, and carnies often tricked the public by sending a number of planted individuals into the crowd and getting them to challenge the wrestlers. They would make it seem as though they gave the pro a run for their money and that he was becoming weakened, only for real members of the public to challenge them and get beaten with ease.
When Did Wrestling Begin Being Broadcast?
When it comes to American pro wrestling or modern wrestling, it wasn’t until televised broadcasts of wrestling became a thing in the 1950s that it began to take off. Before that, in the 1920s, the desire for the public to visit wrestling matches in person waned significantly as it had become apparent to many that it was all fake and that matches seemed pre-determined. However, watching professional wrestling matches at home or at a sports bar started to become a popular pastime for many once the sport began airing on television, and the fandom really began to pick up. The National Wrestling Alliance was formed in 1948, too, which was a unified regulatory body, bringing wrestling more in line with other professional sports.
When Did It Become Mainstream Entertainment?
This naturally paved the way for the sport to become popular and something that the public could get properly invested in. Over the years, popularity rose and fell until the 1980s wrestling boom, when it became a national favorite in entertainment among many of America’s youth. The WWF, or the World Wrestling Federation, began gaining popularity, and wrestling was coined as “sports entertainment.” Many fans knew or suspected that the sport wasn’t entirely legitimate in terms of the drama and rivalries or even the outcomes of matches. However, it was still fairly evident that there was a lot of physicality to the sport. This combination of drama and athleticism made for some very entertaining viewing and even led to many betting on wrestling just as they would with other sports. Even today, you can bet money on wrestling, and there are many real money casino apps and betting apps that allow you to do this easily from your smartphone.
How Does Wrestling Work Today?
Today, the World Wrestling Federation is now known as World Wrestling Entertainment or WWE. This follows a lawsuit in 2002 in which the World Wildlife Foundation wanted to maintain their trademark of WWF and not consistently be confused with the sport of wrestling. Arguably, WWE is much more fitting for the world of wrestling, as it is still simply a form of sporting entertainment. WWE has changed significantly from what it was in the 80s and 90s, with far more money being pumped into the sport than ever. One thing to remember about pro wrestling is that all wrestlers are following scripts and essentially doing two jobs at once. On the one hand, they’re playing the role of their character, be it that of a villain, a hero, or in some cases, even an anti-hero like Stone Cold Steve Austin. On top of that, they are displaying feats of great athleticism and strength, and while the stories and drama may be fake, the physicality is not. Wrestlers will still throw each other around the ring and exert themselves to great extremes, putting on a fantastic show of physical superiority. Once you accept that the whole purpose of wrestling is to showcase these two different talents and to embrace it as pure entertainment, it can be a much more enjoyable experience, even for the most cynical of people.
What Is Happening In The WWE World?
There are an incredible number of different wrestling events happening in WWE today, with over 500 live events happening every year around the world. The current WWE roster features a stunning 235 professional wrestlers, both men and women, all competing in different varying competitions. These pro wrestlers all have their own fanbases. They differ significantly in popularity and fame, and some of the biggest legends in modern wrestling still make an appearance every now and again, such as Triple H. However, he doesn’t compete anymore due to health problems. And some old characters have even returned to the sport after a hiatus, such as the masked Rey Mysterio. Currently, the undisputed Universal Champion in the WWE world is Roman Reigns, who defeated the previous champion, Brock Lesnar, when he won the WWE Championship at Wrestlemania on April 3, 2022. We’re also seeing crossovers happening in the world of wrestling, with influencers such as Logan Paul getting involved in the sport and challenging Roman Reigns in an attempt to usurp his title, something that many wrestling fans are not too happy about.