We all need to have various interests and hobbies outside of our professional lives. The escape from the daily grind can recharge your batteries via another avenue of entertainment. This applies to pro wrestlers even more than the average person’s job. Wrestling is extremely stressful. The physical, mental and emotional struggle of working matches four to five times per week can rack up. Many wrestlers seek to have fun on their off days as a way to enjoy the life they are working towards. The money and fame is great, but if you don’t enjoy the good times, the wrestling grind can drive anyone mad.
Today’s society has embraced the notion of being comfortable with who you are and that carries over to having peculiar interests. Things that could be classified as weird or used to be viewed as downright bizarre are now normal things that people enjoy together. Wrestlers have adapted to that mindset and quite a few find themselves interested in strange hobbies. These men and women choose to enjoy their time off by indulging in various activities they find to be fun or relaxing. We’ll look at all of these stories with the array of stars and their interests with fifteen wrestlers that are into weird things.
15 Kevin Owens: Zoo Enthusiast
The WWE is seeing the best work of Kevin Owens as he’s embraced the top role of being WWE Universal Champion. Owens has one of the more interesting personalities in the wrestling business and lets fans know his interests outside of the ring.
Owens' top interest during his free time is observing animals. The term zoo enthusiast has been used to describe the fascination Owens has with visiting the various locations that have animals on display.
Owens has even sold merchandise with the zoo enthusiast motto, as independent wrestling fans adored that fact about him. His wife’s Instagram page has shown pictures and videos of the Owens family interacting with animals at zoos. The sad thing is Owens’ schedule doesn’t allow him to visit zoos as often as he wants. There are very few off days and such limited time in a town for wrestling show days that Owens rarely gets the time to visit the parks.
14 Kenny Omega: Anime
Kenny Omega has become one of the top stars in New Japan succeeding Finn Balor and A.J. Styles as the leader of the Bullet Club. The talented star is dominating NJPW and has connected with wrestling fans through various hobbies. Omega is into video games, but his most peculiar passion is anime. Long before his wrestling career took him to Japan, Omega loved the Japanese cartoons and the art that came with it.
Many of Omega’s in-ring maneuvers and theatrics are tied to references from video games and anime shows. The fans enjoy the silliness of it and it has helped him become more popular. Omega has cut it out of his persona these days as his main goal is to get the fans to hate him as the top heel in NJPW. Some people still view Omega as an anime character come to life and that’s likely a huge compliment in his mind.
13 Brock Lesnar: Farming
Brock Lesnar is not very passionate about many things in life. The physically imposing monster views pro wrestling and MMA both as things he does for money rather than love of the art. It is almost impossible to imagine Lesnar cracking a smile or enjoying anything out of the blue, but he absolutely loves farming. Lesnar is married to former WWE star Sable and they live on a farm in Moosomin, Saskatchewan (which is in Canada) with their family.
The main reason Lesnar loves the farm life is because it allows him to be secluded from the rest of the world. After listening to Brock talk for a couple of minutes, you can tell how much he despises having to interact with other people on a social level. Lesnar grew up on a dairy farm in South Dakota and it has been a part of him since his early days. His passion for farming and living far away from society will likely be an important aspect of life for Lesnar in the future.
12 Johnny Gargano: Funko Pops
Christmas has opened the gates of hell. We're now collecting Funko Pop! Vinyl's. God help us.. and our bank account. pic.twitter.com/dp9eIZFiIK— Johnny Gargano (@JohnnyGargano) December 26, 2015
Action figures have been around for years as a collector’s item for fans of their specific interests. Funko Pop vinyl figures have changed the game with the more intricately designs adding cuteness to cause fans to purchase them. Johnny Gargano has become a top in-ring performer in recent years on the independent wrestling scene and it landed him a contract with WWE and NXT. Still having the heart of a child, Gargano indulges in many silly purchases and Funko Pops are at the top of the list.
Gargano frequently tweets about his enjoyment of collecting new figures from the Funko brand. The world traveling wrestling star expressed excitement of being able to purchase the figure of his good friend, Kevin Owens. Gargano has a deep collection of various figures from all aspects of entertainment. Without a doubt, Gargano’s most prized of the bunch is a custom made Pop of him created by one of his biggest fans.
11 Becky Lynch: Steampunk
The rise of Becky Lynch is one of the better stories in WWE over the past year. Everyone overlooked her for Charlotte and Sasha Banks during the women’s revolution with new stars coming up to the main roster from NXT. Lynch proved to everyone that she was as good as her peers by becoming the top female star on SmackDown today. One of Lynch’s passions outside of the ring is her love for the genre of steampunk.
For those who are unaware, steampunk is a smaller subsection in the science fiction world that revolves around things designed by 19th century industrial steam-powered machinery. Her ring gear is a nod to the steampunk world and it sets her apart from everyone else on the show. Lynch’s entrance with the smoke and her goggles also add a lot to her presentation thanks to the steampunk aspect of her character. A passion for her steampunk has helped benefit the career of Becky on television.
10 The Rock: Fishing
The Rock has held one of the busiest schedules in entertainment over the past two decades. WWE’s touring schedule is no joke and he worked on a nightly basis in the Attitude Era when the demand was higher than ever for wrestling. All of his hard work has paid off as The Rock has turned his wrestling popularity into mainstream acting success as a definite blockbuster movie star. Recent reports have confirmed that The Rock is the highest paid actor in Hollywood.
One of the things Rock spends his money and time on is the hobby of fishing. With so much time dedicated to work, fishing provides him relaxation from the hustle and bustle of the entertainment industry. He actually caught a 200-pound fish a couple of years ago as the crowning achievement of his fishing accomplishments. The catch took over an hour to reel in and Rock showed his kind nature by releasing him back into the water after snapping the photograph.
9 Xavier Woods: Video Games
Many wrestlers have a strong passion for video games today. In fact, the veterans often criticize today’s stars for spending their free time playing video games rather than doing something more worthwhile. While there could have been quite a few stars to select as the video game fan, Xavier Woods takes it to another level. Woods has found a way to create a branding opportunity out of his love for the gaming world.
The UpUpDownDown YouTube channel features Woods hosting various video game sessions with different wrestlers playing with him backstage. We get an insight into the games our favorite wrestlers enjoy playing or did as a kid. Woods takes it seriously and is often getting intense in his battles against fellow wrestlers backstage. No one in wrestling shows more passion or puts in more work on behalf of the love of video games. Woods truly is the king of gaming in pro wrestling.
8 Sami Zayn: Ska Music
Sami Zayn has thrived in the WWE landscape since signing from the independent wrestling scene. Fans organically connect to Zayn and his authentic nature makes it easy to like him. Zayn doesn’t shy away from any of his quirky traits. His love for ska music stands out at the top of the list. Ska is a genre of music that was a precursor of reggae and rocksteady. The majority of references to ska these days are mocking it, but Zayn has no shame.
Everyone gets excitement when ska music hits at WWE shows, as it means you're hearing a vibrant theme that indicates Zayn is walking down to the ring. The skanking dance exhibited by Zayn has also become part of his on-screen persona and his first official WWE shirt featured art of him dancing. Zayn explained on The Chris Gethard Show that he wasn’t even aware that people thought ska was uncool until he received tweets making fun of him. It isn’t stopping him from showing his ska pride.
7 William Regal: Reptiles
Many wrestlers, and people in general, have pets. The idea of a furry loved one being in the house and doing your best to take care of them is a nice aspect of the home life. William Regal believes in that notion, but his pet choices are completely off the rails compared to the average person. An old WWE magazine special showcased his personal life and most of his pets were in the reptile family.
Regal’s home consisted of eight lizards, two snakes and a tortoise. We have no idea what pets Regal still has or added to the collection today, but his love of reptiles is still strong.
A video in 2012 showed Regal visiting the New England Reptile Distributors to interact with some of the animals there. Regal stated that other wrestlers could keep all the cars and video games. All he needed to keep him company were the array of reptiles he is fascinated by.
6 CM Punk: Comic books
Another formerly unpopular form of entertainment that has taken world by storm is the art of comic books. Marvel and DC have become juggernauts with their superheroes dominating the box office every single year. It all started with the comic books and quite a few wrestlers developed a passion for reading them in their younger years. CM Punk is the biggest wrestling name to show pride in expressing how important comics were to him and still are.
The passion of comics for Punk has led to him dabbling in the field of writing new material for Marvel. Punk is the writer of the current Drax series, a funny character considering Punk’s former co-worker Batista plays him in the Guardians of the Galaxy movies. Punk used to actually yell out the phrase “it’s clobberin’ time” as he walked to the ring before matches as a nod to Fantastic Four’s Thing.
The wrestling passion of Punk may have ended, but comics are something that he will likely never give up.
5 Jeff Hardy: Painting
It is impossible to figure out what's going on in the mind of Jeff Hardy. The unique in-ring performer is even more bizarre outside of the ring and has odd interests. Hardy credits his success to being a free thinker that maximizes his creative and artistic ability. His passion for painting makes perfect sense knowing his personality. Hardy spends a lot of time on intricate paintings and it has been a part of his life for quite some time.
Painting offers a relaxing and fun time in Hardy’s off-time. Hardy has apparently spent even more time painting as he’s cleaned up his life by beating his addiction with drugs. An art form helping in even the slightest of ways to get past a horrible addiction is always a great thing. Hardy’s paintings are shown in his home during scenes of The Final Deletion. Many of Hardy’s face paint choices are derived from the art he puts on the canvas.
4 Sasha Banks: K-Pop
This K-Pop music on satellite radio is making my day!!! #kpop— $asha Banks (@SashaBanksWWE) September 19, 2014
Sasha Banks is among the popular new female wrestlers to arrive on the WWE scene in quite some time. Her in-ring work and popularity played a huge role in the rise of NXT and the women’s revolution coming to the main roster. For as intense as Banks is in the ring and as confident as she is on the microphone, she has quite a few weird interests outside of wrestling. She is strongly into various forms of Asian culture such as anime shows and magna books, but her love of K-Pop is number one.
Banks loves the genre of Korean pop music that has become popular worldwide. Korea’s music scene is booming thanks to the genre growing and Banks is one of the biggest fans. The Boss has named Rain, Big Bang and G-Dragon as some of her favorite musicians of the genre. WWE’s current theme song for Banks is perfect, but if she ever needs a backup, we could see K-Pop make its way to the wrestling world.
3 Daniel Bryan: Clam Digging
One of the more obscure interests on this list comes from WWE Smackdown General Manager Daniel Bryan. The outstanding wrestling performer grew up in Aberdeen, Washington where life was a bit different than other places in the United States. A small town usually sparks many peculiar activities and clam digging was the craze in Aberdeen. Clam digging is the most popular way to harvest clams by using a spading fork or shovel to dig for the clams.
Bryan has always embraced the odd idiosyncrasies that made him stand out as a person and never shied away from being who he is. That’s part of the reason fans fell in love with Bryan and rallied behind him for many years.
Nigel McGuinness was Bryan’s biggest rival in Ring of Honor and frequently used the nickname of “Clam Digger Danielson” to make fun of him. Most of us watching at the time had no idea if clam digging was a real thing, but Bryan has confirmed that it’s a real thing that he did for many years in Washington.
2 Finn Balor: Legos
Most of us spent many hours of our childhood frustratingly trying to put together Legos in hopes of creating something cool. Finn Balor is among the adults that still enjoy Legos and put effort into them. An NXT video package showing the life of Balor outside of the ring revolved around a very quiet home life. One of the rare hobbies he had in his down time was a fondness for putting together difficult Lego displays.
Balor uses his off time in between shows to gradually work on a Lego project as a way to relax and unwind from the struggles of the road. The recent heartbreaking news of Balor relinquishing the WWE Universal Championship due to suffering a torn labrum injury has ruled him out of the ring for about six months. Balor is taking the news as positive as one can in the tough predicament. One of the funny bright spots is getting more time to build Legos as he recovers. Finn uploaded a viral video of his excitement upon finding out he’d be able to continue having fun with this Lego world from the WWE trainer.
1 Mick Foley: Santa Claus
The majority of weird interests on this list are still things that have a decent amount of people that enjoy them. You can likely find a friend or acquaintance that does most of these things. Mick Foley’s odd interest is the exception to the rule. The hardcore legend loves Christmas. Yes, we all enjoy the most beloved holiday, but Foley takes his love of the season to another level. Foley shows his love of Christmas by wearing a Christmas related item every day as part of a charity project.
One aspect of Foley’s passion that stands out as a bit extreme is his love of dressing as Santa Claus. Foley dyes his beard white and cosplays as Santa for fun. A documentary titled I Am Santa filmed the lives of various men that enjoy playing Santa and broke down who they are in real life. Naturally, Foley was the most high profile name of the men in the documentary.
The current role as Raw General Manager may cause him to eliminate the Santa cosplaying, but Foley still has a Christmas room in his home to enjoy his weird passion.