Tuesday, April 23

Best Wrestling Schools

Wrestling schools are crucial for any aspiring talent to learn their craft in a safe and controlled environment, lowering the risk of being injured while being able to develop their skills in the ring and on the microphone.



Related

18 Best WWE NXT TakeOver Events, According To Fan Votes

NXT TakeOver events were often the highlight of WWE’s calendar year, and these were the best ones ever, according to Cagematch.net.

Unfortunately, there are many dodgy wrestling schools that don’t follow the best practices and only have selfish interests in mind in terms of earning money, which is a shame, but there are also many brilliant schools out there to counterbalance that. Some of their graduates have gone on to achieve great success in WWE, AEW, TNA, and other promotions. Choosing where to learn is one of the most important decisions any young wrestler can make, and within this article, we will rank some of the most notable wrestling schools that are the best for aspiring talents.

UPDATE: 2024/03/05 20:00 EST BY BENJAMIN VIEIRA


Everyone starts somewhere in the world of professional wrestling. It is a craft that has been passed down from generation to generation, with each one building upon what has been taught to them by the previous. Over the years, a number of schools have been able to build up some of the biggest stars of tomorrow. While some are operated by professional wrestling companies themselves, some are independent and operate on their own. Here, we will look at some of the most notable names where professional wrestlers have gone on to become some of the biggest stars in the modern era.


16


15 D-Von Dudley Academy (Winter Park, FL)

It Is Headed By A Tag Team Legend

D-Von Dudley

Year Opened

2020

Notable Trainees

Mila, Kayden Carter, Jessika Carr

Opened up in 2014 by D-Von Dudley, this school is not the first time that the Dudley’s have entered into the world of training professional wrestlers. For a while, they owned and operated the Team 3D Academy. However, after that closed, D-Von entered into a new business on his own. Located in Winter Park, Florida, the school has produced some notable names, some of whom who have gone on to sign with NXT.

14 KnokX Pro Wrestling Academy (Van Nuys, CA)

WWE Legends Led The Group Of Teachers There


Year Opened

2009

Notable Trainees

Vanessa Borne, Miro, Holidead

Another California-based pro wrestling school, KnokX Pro Wrestling Academy has some impressive talent running in it in the form of Rikishi and fellow Anoa’i family member Black Pearl, with Gangrel working as a trainer there as well. Also functioning as a promotion, KnokX provides a nice variety in its curriculum, offering classes for aspiring managers, commentators, and referees in addition to classes exclusively for women and LGBTQ+ students. When it comes to notable alumni, KnokX boasts former NXT star Vanessa Borne (a.k.a. Danielle Kamela) as well as AEW’s Miro (formerly WWE’s Rusev).

13 Ohio Valley Wrestling/The Al Snow Wrestling Academy (Louisville, KY)

OVW Has A Long History Behind It


Year Opened

1993

Notable Trainees

John Cena, Randy Orton, Batista, Shelton Benjamin

In decades prior, Ohio Valley Wrestling has functioned as a developmental territory for both WWE and Impact Wrestling at different times. In mid-2018, however, Al Snow — who used to be a trainer in OVW during its different eras — purchased the promotion from founder Danny Davis and set up an associated wrestling school, The Al Snow Wrestling Academy. Since then, Snow’s school has been training the talent that shows up on OVW. On top of that, The Academy is also accredited by the state of Kentucky as a legitimate vocational school.

12 Santino Bros. Wrestling Academy (Los Angeles, CA)

The LA Based School Has It’s Own Promotion As Well


Year Opened

2008

Notable Trainees

Brody King, Famous B, The DKC

Based in Los Angeles and founded in 2008, Santino Bros. Wrestling Academy is run by Kaos and Mongol, the Fighting Santino Bros, who had the distinction of beating Matt and Nick Jackson in their first bout as The Young Bucks. Like many of the other schools, Santino Bros. runs its own associated promotion, and noted alumni from the Academy include AEW’s Brody King, Lucha Underground alum Famous B, and The DKC, who’s currently an LA Dojo Young Lion in New Japan Pro-Wrestling.

11 Create A Pro Wrestling Academy (Hicksville, NY)

The School Has Produced Numerous AEW Champions


Year Opened

2014

Notable Trainees

MJF, Max Caster, Kris Statlander, “Smart” Mark Sterling

Known as Curt Hawkins in WWE, Brian Myers is a talent many fans may take for granted, but he’s had a hand in training some massively popular current stars. AEW standouts MJF, Max Caster of the Acclaimed, and Kris Statlander — not to mention hated heel manager “Smart” Mark Sterling — all trained at Create A Pro Wrestling Academy.

Based in New York, Create A Pro was co-founded by Myers and Pat Buck, a wrestler turned WWE producer turned VP of Talent Development at AEW.

10 Glasgow Pro Wrestling Asylum (Glasgow, Scotland)

It Has A Close Connection With UK Promotions


Year Opened

2014

Notable Trainees

Jake Lawless, Landon Riley, Lee MacRae

There is a reason that the UK wrestling scene is so hot right now, with Scotland, in particular, providing some of the very best talents and the Glasgow Pro Wrestling Asylum has had a large part to play in that.

With talented UK wrestlers such as Wolfgang often popping in to work with the younger wrestlers, GPWA is one of the best options for aspiring wrestlers within the United Kingdom to work.

With a strong connection with Insane Championship Wrestling, which is one of the UK’s biggest and best independents, there is a real chance for wrestlers to get their foot in the door from learning here.

9 Worldwide Wrestling Dojo (Bristol, PA)

It Carries The Legacy Of ROH’s Developmental School

Cheeseburger and his students at the Worldwide Wrestling Dojo


Year Opened

2018

Notable Trainees

Wheeler Yuta

Ring of Honor spent much of the 21st century to date being the place to see some of the best wrestling in North America, and the promotion boasted its own school, the ROH Dojo, to train future stars. Since being purchased by Tony Khan in 2022, the future of the original ROH Dojo appears to be up in the air, but Pennsylvania’s Worldwide Wrestling Dojo appears to be continuing the original Dojo’s Legacy.

With ROH veterans Cheeseburger and Sumie Sakai (who in turn trained with Killer Kowalski) as head trainers, the Worldwide Wrestling Dojo has only been around since 2018, but can boast one current success in three-time ROH Pure Champion Wheeler Yuta.


8 WWE Performance Center (Orlando, FL)

Numerous Legends Have Come Out Of WWE’s Developmental Territory

Year Opened

2013

Notable Trainees

Becky Lynch, Braun Strowman, Baron Corbin, Alexa Bliss, Bianca Belair

When it comes to facilities and world-class coaching, there is nothing that can compete with the WWE Performance Center, with this realistically being the best coaching school in the entire world.

However, you can’t simply stroll up to the Performance Center in either Florida or London and just expect to be welcomed in. No, you need to be invited by WWE themselves and hired by the company, hence why it ranks lower on the list.

Some wrestlers have never trained anywhere other than the Performance Center, with Charlotte Flair being a perfect example of a WWE homegrown talent.


Related

10 Years Later: How WWE’s Performance Center Was A Majorly Successful Investment

The WWE Performance Center has produced many popular superstars, and its setting even saved the company during the pandemic.

7 Flatbacks Wrestling School (Apopka, FL)

Tyler Breeze And Shawn Spears Own And Teach At The School

Tyler Breeze and Shawn Spears with students at Flatbacks Wrestling School

Year Opened

2019

Notable Trainees

Cezar Bononi, Colten Gunn, Xia Li, Kiana James, Dasha Gonzalez

It is quite rare to get an opportunity to be taught by two wrestlers currently working at the highest level of the sport as they work in their prime, but Flatbacks Wrestling School offers that.

The company is run by WWE Superstar Tyler Breeze as well as AEW’s Shawn Spears who are considered to be two of the safest, most talented, and popular wrestlers in the industry.

The fact that they are both at the top of their games grants people a huge opportunity to work and have their finger on the pulse, working alongside two wrestlers who have some fantastic contacts within the business.


6 Black and Brave Wrestling Academy (Davenport, IA)

The School Is Operated By Seth “Freakin” Rollins And Marek Brave

Year Opened

2018

Notable Trainees

N/A

The Black and Brave Wrestling Academy has quickly developed a strong reputation for itself amongst aspiring young wrestlers as one of the best places to go to develop yourself as a performer.

The company, which is owned by Seth Rollins and his friend, Marek Brave, who is the more hands-on coach out of the two due to Seth’s obviously busy schedule, with incredible facilities being offered.


The fact that Rollins is incredibly hands-on is a big plus for this school, as wrestlers have the chance to develop their in-ring work, alongside having a gym as well as housing for those who want to stick around close for the entire program.

5 Wild Samoan Training Center (Minneola, FL)

Afa Anoa’i Has Trained Countless Stars

Wild Samoan Training Center

Year Opened

1970s

Notable Trainees

Batista, Yokozuna, Tamina Snuka, Roman Reigns, Billy Kidman, Rikishi

Samoans have an incredible history when it comes to the professional wrestling business, and Afa Anoa’i’s training school is one of the ways that the Samoan dynasty was able to continue and thrive.

He is responsible for the training of countless family members from Yokozuna to Tamina Snuka, and even Roman Reigns, as well as non-family members such as Dave Bautista and Billy Kidman.


While this isn’t the slickest and most modern training facility, that doesn’t mean that it isn’t a fantastic option for aspiring wrestlers to check out, with some grit and hard work being needed.

Related

Afa & Sika: 10 Things To Know About Roman Reigns’ Uncle & Father

Modern fans might not know much about the patriarchs of the Anoa’i dynasty, Aka and Sika, otherwise known as the Wild Samoans.

4 Jacobs-Prichard Wrestling Academy (Knoxville, TN)

It Is Operated By Kane And Tom Prichard

Year Opened

2019

Notable Trainees

Ivy Nile

A training school co-owned by Tom Prichard and Kane, Jacobs-Prichard Wrestling Academy provides a vast amount of experience and opportunity for any young hopeful wanting to break into the wrestling business.


Not only does the JPWA training school offer wrestlers the chance to develop their in-ring abilities, but the company also runs its own shows which gives the talent the chance to improve in front of a live crowd.

Both Kane and Prichard also offer constant communication with the trainees, allowing them to contact them whenever needed for advice and help, which is a brilliant bonus.

3 NJPW Dojo (Los Angeles, CA & Tokyo, Japan)

The Young Lions Train In The Dojos

njpw-la-classes

Year Opened

1972

Notable Trainees

Jushin Thunder Liger, Keiji Mutoh, Ultimo Dragon, Satoshi Kojima, Hiroshi Tanahashi, Hirooki Goto

Whether it is the LA Dojo in America or the one in Tokyo itself, the New Japan Pro Wrestling Dojo is somewhere that all aspiring wrestlers want to have the opportunity to wrestle, learning from some of the very best.


The Japanese style is unlike any other, with Japenese wrestling being far stiffer and more strike-orientated than another style and the best way to learn it is by working with the top Japanese wrestling company in the world.

The Dojos are incredibly difficult, with a lot being expected from the trainees when they arrive to learn, but if you’re willing to put in the work then this is a great place to do that.

2 Reality Of Wrestling (Texas City, TX)

Booker T Owns And Runs It

Year Opened

2005

Notable Trainees

Roxanne Perez, AQA, Kylie Rae


The Reality of Wrestling training school is owned by WWE Hall Of Famer, Booker T, who is one of the greatest to ever lace up the boots and a fantastic person to learn from both in the ring and in-terms of charisma and promos.

This school is based in Houston, Texas, and offers aspiring wrestlers like former NXT Women’s Champion Roxanne Perez an incredible opportunity to develop their skills and learn the ropes, which is an opportunity all young wrestlers should be looking to take up.

As well as that, Booker T’s school has become a promotion of its own, putting on huge shows that bring in major crowds, with the former World Heavyweight Champion himself even lacing up the boots to work with younger talent on occasion.

1 The Monster Factory (Paulsboro, NJ)

The School Has Produced Numerous Champions

Matt Riddle with Damian Priest


Year Opened

1983

Notable Trainees

Bam Bam Bigelow, Tony Atlas, King Kong Bundy, The Big Show, Raven, Sheamus, D’Lo Brown, Sonjay Dutt

The Monster Factory has been in operation since 1983 and is highly respected as a training school, with this school being responsible for the training of some incredible wrestlers, such as Big Show, Bam Bam Bigelow, and Sheamus.

Even recently, Matt Riddle was able to develop from this area, which is highly considered to be one of the best places to learn and develop, with the school being run by Danny Cage, who is a well-respected trainer.

The fact that Cage was recently brought in as a guest coach at the WWE Performance Center shows how highly respected he is as a coach, so heading to The Monster Factory to train would be a wise decision for any aspiring wrestler.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.