Have you ever watched a wrestling match? As a kid did you run around pretending to be Shawn Michaels giving people ‘The Sweet Chin Music‘, ‘Spearing’ friends like Goldberg or jump off your bed onto a sibling emulating Eddie Guerrero’s ‘5 Star Frog Splash’?
Well, if you’ve ever dreamt of what it must feel like to be a WWE superstar, or simply are one of those people that says “It’s fake!!! I can do that” and wants to prove it, now’s your chance. The trainers at Grapple Max Dojo can hook you up with a once in a life time experience.
Being an avid fan of the WWE (World Wrestling Entertainment) and NJPW (New Japan Pro-Wrestling), my friends decided to put together a special class for me over with the pros at Grapple Max Dojo for my birthday. Now, when I say pros, I’m not kidding. I mean it. These guys are current active professional wrestlers that tour the world.
They have weeks where they may travel and do 3 big matches a week at a show, and have 3 big training sessions in between, only giving their bodies one day to recover, before they are back at it full blast again. Their passion for the sport really shows.
From the moment we walked through the door, we felt the energy in room and could easily see how this is the Most Electrifying Activity In sports entertainment today (see what I did there). When we first saw their regular students body slamming each other onto the mat, we were a little intimidated to say the least, but the instructors very quickly made us feel at ease and reassured us that they would make sure we were safe.
The first thing, and we would soon learn: the most important thing, was how to fall and take a hit. It looks a lot easier than it is and there’s a definite learning curve. You’re body will tell you really quick if you’re doing it wrong.
Once you learn how to spread out the impact through out your body properly, it takes 90% of the feeling of the impact away. There really is a technique to everything they do.
We moved on to learning some clotheslines and shoulder blocks. The interesting thing is that it’s harder to give one properly than to receive one. The thing about pro-wrestling is that it’s not about hurting your opponent, but rather protecting them from serious injury. Their life is literally in your hands. You gain a trust and bond with your partner that you didn’t know you had.
For a fat guy I’m really light on my feet and quite strong, and I was super keen on learning more moves. Noticing our ability and my enthusiasm for the sport they pushed into some slightly more advanced moves. Due to my training and background as a professional dancer, I was able to pick things up quite fast and we requested to do a few of our all-time favorite moves.
There was 4 of us and we each picked a special move – I got to pick 3 moves since it was my birthday. The moves my friends picked were 3 of the most recognizable (and I’m sure the most mimicked) The Spear, The Rock Bottom, and the ever popular Stone Cold Stunner. The three moves I chose, performing one on each of my friends during our match were the Sidewalk Slam, Power Slam, and my personal favourite the Enziguri.
Being the overly enthusiastic people we were we showed up with full costumes ready to rumble. The Grapple Max guys choreographed a 2 minutes wrestling match for us with the underdog getting ambushed and bullied by the 3 heels (wrestling term for bad guys) and then coming back to beat them up and win the match.
Expertly choreographed they had us feeling and looking like seasoned veterans. The best part of the whole thing was that they shot a video of us and cut a small movie, casing the best parts of our match. They even had my Enziguri in slow motion!!!!! Not gonna lie, I found myself re-watching the video over and over again.
The only problem with this is it does leave you a bit sore the next day, but that is also why we loved it. It made us feel like we not only really learned something, but like our mini-performance must have been amazing because we gave it our all.
After the lesson we just hung out with the trainers and slugged some much needed water while they told us some stories about their wrestling journey and stuff that happened while they were on the road. I have to say, favourite thing about the experience was the trainers. Not only did they make us feel safe and in control, but they were really nice and accommodating.
Their passion for what they do fuels a fire under your feet and gets the body moving. It was the best birthday party I’ve ever had and I’m looking forward to my next lesson.
Who knows maybe you’ll see Juan Pablo on the tv one day working for the WWE (I can dream, can’t I). If you’re looking to spice up a birthday party, stag night, or just looking for something fun that’s different to do with the guys one night, Grapple Max Dojo can definitely hook you up.
This gets the Juan Pablo stamp of approval. “If you smellllllllllllllllllll, what Juan Pablo, is cooking!!!!!!!”
Never been to a Grapple MAX show? Now’s the time to experience for yourself our unique NO RING, NO ROPES, NO BARRIERS style of pro wrestling entertainment.