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It's not as tough as it used to be for women to get into wrestling. Wrestling organizations offer men and women the same opportunities to join the ranks, including through the World Wrestling Entertainment development system or Total Nonstop Action Wrestling programs. For some, becoming a professional wrestler is as simple as knowing the right people or getting scouted at a local event. For most wrestlers, though, it takes years of dedication, training and persistence to get involved with top wrestling companies.
Learn to Communicate
Going pro isn't just about knowing how to take down opponents -- it requires working the audience and building a fan base. WWE Superstar William Regal posted advice for aspiring wrestlers on Twitter in January 2013, noting it's important to have communication and people skills. Wrestlers without fans rarely become professional because, ultimately, there's no demand to see them. Regal suggests watching old events to study the greatest wrestlers in the industry. Take note of how they present themselves, how they treat their fans and why people like them.
Start Working Out
Wrestling requires constant physical contact that can do a lot of damage to an unprepared body. Although most female wrestlers take on same-sex opponents, they still need the strength to stay steady against blows and to keep opponents pinned. Kaitlyn, a former WWE Diva, commented on WWE's site that in order to go pro, you need to embrace cardio and pick up healthy eating habits. In June 2013, WWE posted Kaitlyn's personal workout tips, which included routine squat jumps, chin-ups and weight lifting.
Apply for Training
Training schools aren't a requirement for professional wrestlers, but it's an ideal way to learn the trade and get a foot in the door. Generally, candidates must be at least 18 years old and physically fit to be accepted into wrestling schools. However, requirements and content vary by school. Some offer programs for different age groups from kids to adults, like at the Wild Samoan Pro Wrestling Training Center in Minneola, Florida. Others provide training based on experience. For example, the Knokx Professional Training Academy in Sun Valley, California teaches beginners the basics, such as pinning opponents and composing yourself at business meetings. Advanced candidates learn more in-depth details, including thinking like your opponent and creating your wrestling persona.
Get Some Exposure
Top wrestling organizations typically recruit wrestlers who show the most potential and have the most experience, but everyone has to start somewhere. Local wrestling organizations offer chances for exposure. The Ultimate Wrestling Experience in Allentown, Pennsylvania, for instance, guarantees chosen candidates who train and pay their dues the opportunity to perform at their events. Once you have at least a year of professional experience, you can seek opportunities with more widely-known organizations. For example, Ring of Honor Wrestling regularly holds tryouts for those with one year of professional experience, where candidates are evaluated and potentially recruited by ROH wrestlers and officials.
- Bleacher Report: The Most Influential Women's Wrestler of All Time
- Kbands Training: How to Become a Better Wrestler: Core Strength
- WWE Network: Superstars and Divas' Bodybuilding Pasts: WWE Divas Champion Kaitlyn
- WWE Network: Train Like a Diva Champ: Kaitlyn's Workout Tips: 1. Squat Jump (Six Sets of 4 Reps)
- Ring of Honor Wrestling: Ring of Honor Training Seminar Announced
- SB Nation: William Regal Tips on Becoming a Pro Wrestler
- Wild Samoan Pro Wrestling Training Center: Adult Programs
- Knokx Pro Entertainment: Professional Wrestling Academy