Tha Sports Junkies 101

Opinion: Why Professional Wrestling Is Important…

Why Professional Wrestling Is Important Audrey Le Pennec, via Flickr.

Wrestling News

Opinion: Why Professional Wrestling Is Important…

Sports-Entertainment… Yeah, I know, I know, it’s the moniker coined by the first family of professional wrestling; and widely accepted amongst those in the industry. But, for old-school fans, Professional Wrestling is the proper name for the game.

You’ll once in awhile hear those throwback terms by those whose lives were, or are the business. Terms like “carny”, referring to its roots in the carnival circuits still breathe life into those who lived it; who had the chance to experience its rich history first hand.

Inspired by the ancient grappling styles of wrestling found in Greece, Babylonia and certain parts of Africa; professional wrestling was utilized as a form of entertainment during intermission.

Naadam festival
Mongolia, Bulgan province, Naadam festival, wrestler painting at the stadium

But professional wrestling wasn’t always as popular as it is today; its beginnings in its modern form can be traced back as far as the 19th century. Europe and North America became focal points for the sport, where exhibitions would be put on in order to keep audiences captivated. At least until the marquee event would be ready to go on.

A Little History Lesson…

“Wrestling the Strongman” became a popular thing, especially at carnivals. Countless individuals would pay into the pot to see if they could best the strongman of the act. And many would lose, whether because the strongman really outmuscled them; or out of falling into fear of what would happen.

Although, eventually professional wrestling would become a bigger attraction, garnering a base of fans loyal to the performers. Whether it was because they liked a grappler’s style, presentation, or could relate to them; fans would eventually flock to wrestling events in droves.

The Regional Influences of Pro Wrestling.

The influence of professional wrestling would eventually grow stronger; in different parts of the world, different styles would soon develop. Niches developed from the exhibition of these different styles, which would years later be shared amongst the global frame of the business.

In Europe, catch wrestling was the preferred choice of wrestlers, which was developed in the late 1800s (1870) by J.G. Chambers. A hybrid of several English styles of wrestling, including Cumberland and Westmorland, Lancashire, Cornwall, Devon, Irish collar-and-elbow, Greco-Roman, as well as influences from the Indian subcontinents.

Mexico and Latin countries are dominated by the Lucha Libre style, which is heavily based on agility and stamina, high-flying impactful maneuvers. In the Lucha style, professional wrestling is seen more as a sport, almost to the point of a religion. Technicos (Babyfaces, or good guys) are often at war with Rudos (Heels, or bad guys).

Lucha Libre At Arena Mexico
Dragon Lee, right, puts Kamaitachi in a headlock during a match at Arena Mexico in Mexico City, Mexico, on Friday, March 4, 2016. Mexican professional wrestling, known as ‘Lucha Libre,’ is the country’s second-most popular spectator sport behind soccer. Photographer: Susana Gonzalez/Bloomberg via Getty Images

While high-flying may be a highlight of the Lucha style, they also focus on the ground aspect, as well; sometimes delivering either a devastating slam, brutal strikes, or inescapable submission holds.

Japan’s Contribution…

Japan’s focus in the business is that of Puroresu or Japanese Strong Style. With its influences heavily stemming from the American style of pro wrestling, its focus is more on the hard-hitting aspects of combat sports. Martial arts strikes, throws and submissions dominate the approach of combat.

Japanese Women’s Wrestling, or Joshi Wrestling

The style has been popularized through such promotions as All-Japan Pro Wrestling, New Japan Pro Wrestling, Pro Wrestling NOAH, Zero-1, Michinoku Pro, and the like; it even led to becoming the influential style in the WWE.

The American style of professional wrestling…

Is easily the most recognizable; promotions such as the WWE, Impact Wrestling, Ring of Honor, NWA and AWA have all used it. The American style is deeply based on storylines and character building. Need a good example of what I mean?

Why is it important?

Well, after that little history lesson, we finally get to the reason why professional wrestling is important; which is why you started reading this article in the first place. Alright, think back to the first time you watched a wrestling match. Think back to that one thing that hooked you.

Was it the action in the ring? Was it the story being told? The people involved? The glitz and glamour of the event? How old were you when you first saw a professional wrestling match?

Was it a big promotion, like the WWE?

Was it an international wrestling company?


Whatever it may have been, it was something that clearly stuck with you, and made you a fan. For some, its the look and mystique of the characters. For others, it could be the build of a feud or a chase for a title.

But for some? It’s about representation.

Think about it like this, these last couple of years, especially in the WWE, women’s wrestling has gotten far more attention and respect than in the past. Just a few short years ago, the women’s wrestling was more or less considered a joke, or sideshow to the main show.

Funny how that works, being a sideshow to something that was once considered a sideshow.


Women’s wrestling match from April 1st, 1924

The women involved didn’t like the idea that their hard work and efforts were nothing more to the fans than a pee break or chance to buy merch at the merch stands. They made it a point to earn their way into the fans’ affections.

And really, can you blame them?

Professional wrestling, as a whole, isn’t just for guys; women, young women, in particular, enjoy it. And, what kind of example are you setting, when you’re being pushed to the side for someone else to gain?

That’s why the women’s revolution was so important to the WWE’s fanbase. Because the company, being a family-friendly company, shied away from the raunch and staunch of the Attitude and Ruthless Aggression eras.

Bygone are the mud/gravy wrestling matches, the bra-and-panty matches, and so on. Now, the women are showing that they can go just as hard as the guys in the ring; in 2016, we had the first-ever women’s Hell in a Cell match between Sasha Banks and then-RAW Women’s champion Charlotte Flair.

In 2015, Asuka debuted in NXT, dominating the women’s division, which led to her title shot at NXT Takeover: Dallas against Bayley in 2016. She went on to defeat Bayley and hold onto the NXT Women’s Title until she was injured at Takeover: Brooklyn III in August of last year. Her win streak, still intact at (last I checked) 877 wins.

I could be wrong, though…

Getting back to the point…

Last year also saw the first-ever women’s Money in the Bank match and this year? The first women’s Royal Rumble match. Why does this matter? Because of young girls finally having someone they can look up to; finally having a strong role model that they can relate to. Someone they won’t, or really, can’t be shamed for wanting to emulate.

Because the message is one that should be told to every little girl, that with enough hard work, they can make anything happen.

And what does this have to do with the premise of this article?


Professional wrestling is a form of entertainment, it is. But, it can also be an inspiration, a great motivator; something that can both engage one’s imagination and captivate one’s very being.

In truth, it can light a fire in one’s soul.

Don’t believe me? Take a look at this 2017 video of John Cena meeting fans whose lives he’s touched:

Need I say more?

In closing…

People will have their different opinions on pro wrestling; whether its on which style is best or yesteryear’s style is better than today’s style (or vise-versa), etc., people will always have something to say.

In essence, it’s a uniter, and unifier, something that brings people together. A pleasant distraction from the everyday norm. And isn’t that what it was always meant to be? Love it or hate it, professional wrestling is a great thing, because whether it’s your family or your friends; you’ll have a great time when you go to a show together.


Follow us on Twitter: @TSJ_Sports & @TSJ_WWE

Follow the Writer: @GregNecroBlack

If you liked the post on this page, you could donate to support a continuous effort from our creative writers. Your small donation will make a difference. You can learn more about this writer below:

I’m Gregory Black, editor of the Wrestling News Dept. here on TSJ101, and I am someone you can call a student of life. Always looking to learn, and even considering going back to school for what I love. Writing, reporting, and bringing the news to you.

I want to make this happen, would you like to help? Click the button below to “buy me a coffee”. I thank you, not only for reading the article but for choosing us for all your sports news.

Any donations made to support a writer go directly to the writer, NOT the site. All donations are exclusively meant to support the journey of this aspiring journalist.