Long ago, a wise man advised me to pick a sport that I could play forever. It was my grandfather, and I think he just wanted a golf companion other than my grandmother, and decided to talk the game up. It's true though, golf is a game that can be played for a long time. While pros may suffer certain injuries, proper body maintenance can keep a golfer playing for decades. Baseball is a step down, but players are known to play over fifteen to twenty years.
Basketball reaches somewhat of a middle ground, and then we get into games like hockey and American football. The NHL and NFL sees young players chewed up and spit out year after year, and players who stick around invariably sustain injuries throughout their careers. Both sports involve bone crushing hits, which can cause broken bones, torn ligaments and, of course, head trauma.
I've said this before and I'll say it again, professional wrestlers are as tough as NHL and NFL players. Similarly, many suffer serious injuries and in many cases it is just a few of years before they leave their company (but long careers are not uncommon in pro wrestling, especially among popular stars). Obviously, wrestling also involves the "like-ability" factor and if a wrestler is not liked or hated enough, he or she may find themselves seeking other employment. Even if they are well liked, wrestling often becomes a part time gig and they focus on other ventures and interests. Here are fifteen examples of fifteen former wrestling stars who are now pursuing other interesting projects. Did we miss your favorite? Let us know, we are open to constructive criticism (but we prefer silent awe).
15 Edge: Actor
14 Lita: Music
13 Bill Goldberg: Broadcasting and Some Acting
12 Hulk Hogan: Various Adventures
One of the most charismatic and popular characters it wto ever step into the ring, Hulk Hogan has done a bit of everything a retired athlete can do in pseudo-retirement. Of course, he has retired a few times, so if you are offended by Hogan being in an article discussing wrestlers who are out of the game, I sincerely apologize.
11 Rick Steiner: Real Estate/School Board
Again, Steiner isn't completely retired, but also again, sue me, wrestling is now his part time and he has moved on to much quieter and less dangerous things. After making a name for himself as one of the sport's all time best tag team wrestlers, Steiner has turned his efforts to real estate and local school board related politics. He operates a real estate brokerage office in Atlanta, and serves on the school board for Cherokee County in Georgia.
10 Mick Foley: Writing/Stand-up Comedy
Remember when I wrote briefly about how tough wrestlers were, despite people calling their craft "fake?" You should be saying choreographed, as fake is something else altogether. Mick Foley, or whatever you want to call him, is one of the toughest to ever enter the ring.
He still makes appearance at wrestling events, but has also been very active writing over the past decade and a half. He wrote multiple memoirs and autobiographical works, but has achieved great success writing children's books. Most of his memoirs have been New York Times Bestsellers, and a couple of his kids' books have won awards.
He has expressed a longing to write more, but claims that sitting in front of computer screens for extended periods of time gives him headaches. This is no surprise considering the amount of head trauma he sustained throughout his career.
9 Jesse Ventura: Acting and Politics
Prior to his wrestling career, "The Body" was a military man, serving with the US Navy during the Vietnam War. He would go on to a career in wrestling and later turned to acting. His best role was probably his first, playing Blain in the Schwarzenegger classic "Predator," in which he famously stated "I ain't got time to bleed."
8 Scotty 2 Hotty: Firefighter
Graduated from @LakeTechCenter Fire Academy tonight. pic.twitter.com/B5XU3pRCHH
— Scotty 2 Hotty (@TheScotty2Hotty) June 5, 2013
7 DDP and Trish Stratus: Yoga
Not to sound like a broken record, but as has been discussed before, wrestlers are notoriously tough and train as hard as any athletes around. A part of that training, that is sometimes not considered by fans, is flexibility and restorative forms of training. Diamond Dallas Page suffered a serious back injury back in the late 90s and discovered Yoga while recovering. He has since started his own Yoga program known as DDP Yoga, which is focused on introducing men to the exercise.
6 Shawn Michaels: Religion
5 Kane: Acting and Some Politics
While he too still shows up at wrestling events these days, Glenn Jacobs has embraced some other passions over the past few years. He has done some acting in his time, and has costarred in "See No Evil" and "See No Evil 2," a pair of WWE Studios' bloodbaths.
4 Chris Jericho: Music
Jericho still shows up now and again, but he is more or less retired. He now spends the vast majority of his time in the studio with his heavy metal band Fozzy. They are a high energy band with the self described goal of "bringing the fun back to rock and roll." I didn't know the fun had left but I guess this is just like "sexy" having to have been brought back.
3 Jonathan Coachman: ESPN Host
2 Marc Mero: Motivational Speaker
1 Chyna: Adult Films
Moving from Marc Mero, who some consider to be the front man of a life-changing organisation, we now look to another of wrestling's greatest female stars. Chyna, known for being one of the most intimidating ladies to ever enter the ring, has made a total of six adult films.
She played She-Hulk in a couple of films which were "Avengers" parodies, and in the others she just played herself. While she went through some tough times in the mid 2000s, she claimed that her experience in the adult industry helped get her back on her feet.
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