Luke Hawx Exclusive Interview for SwoleScience.com
Professional wrestling is one of the hardest professions to achieve success in due to it’s unrelenting demands, and the level of talent and training needed. Professional wrestling combines incredible physical prowess: strength, agility, acrobatics, coordination, intense training, and endurance; with acting: improvisational skills, reading and playing the crowd, and creating a character that not only fits the wrestler, but is also popular. The many requirements of this career have produced some of the most versatile and charismatic entertainers in the world, such as, but not limited to: Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson, Hulk Hogan, Jesse Ventura, Steve ‘Stone Cold’ Austin, Kevin Nash, John Cena, and Mr. T. To become a successful wrestler one must be able to excite and appease the crowd with incredible and creative physical feats as well as entertain them with presence and character.
SwoleScience recently had the opportunity and pleasure of interviewing a true driving force in the wrestling entertainment world: Luke Hawx of WildKat Sports. Luke is based out of New Orleans, Louisiana, and maintains one of the premier wrestling training facilities which has groomed high level wrestlers and sent them to countless organizations and shows, including the World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE). Read more below.
Luke Hawx Exclusive Interview for SwoleScience.com
Luke Hawx is an accomplished professional wrestler, stuntman, actor, and owner/head trainer at WildKat Sports. He possesses decades of experience within the professional wrestling and sports entertainment world, and has appeared in WWE SmackDown, Extreme Rising, ECW (Extreme Championship Wrestling), Extreme Rising, and TNA (Total Nonstop Action Wrestling). His understanding of the business has allowed him to not only teach and develop new talent but to compete in matches on a constant basis. Luke has appeared in feature films such as: The Mechanic with Jason Statham, Escape Plan with Sylvester Stallone and Arnold Schwarzenegger, and G.I. Joe Retaliation with Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson and Channing Tatum. We sat down with Luke, and received an exclusive inside look into the world of professional wrestling, training, and entertainment.
SwoleScience: So Luke, what is your experience in the wrestling world?
Luke Hawx: I’ve been pro wrestling 15 years, I’ve worked with WWE, TNA, ECW, Ring of Honor, pretty much any indie promotion, XPW, all the NWA’s. I’ve pretty much wrestled for every promotion.
SwoleScience: Are you still currently wrestling?
Luke Hawx: Yes, I am very active and on the scene. I own WildKat Sports and Entertainment which puts on live shows as well, and every show is a sold out packed house. We’re doing really well.
SwoleScience: What is the goal behind WildKat Sports and how do you think that it differs from other wrestling schools?
Luke Hawx: Basically, WildKat Sports is the only real professional wrestling school in the south. Booker T. has one in Houston, and there’s another one in the Tampa/Orlando area where WWE runs their school. There are no schools in the area that really produce good wrestling any more. I think most of them are pretty much run by some hobo-joe type guy who’s in the business and really shouldn’t be, and you can see that in the difference between WildKat and other schools just by looking at our product and quality of performances. Guys who come out of our school, have been trained on everything from nutrition, looks, ring work, and everything else. It’s not just going out there and being in the ring, it’s also about how you look and perform in front of the crowd, because if a guy looks like he should be in the front row, then he probably should be in the front row.
SwoleScience: What do you think are the most important qualities for a wrestler, besides physicality; what else does it take?
Luke Hawx: It’s a big change. It’s not like it was in the 60’s, 70’s, and 80’s, where you can be fat or skinny, most guys back then were just these big brawler type guys, which are what you would see in a bar room fight. Nowadays, it’s more physique; but it’s also more entertainment. You have to be a big time entertainer. You have to be able to talk, wow the crowd, and have that look where people either want to clap for you or boo you coming, even if they don’t know your name. It’s a very hard thing to do, you have to have the look, the in-ring work, and be able to talk.
SwoleScience: What do you think of the wrestling world right now, and where do you see it going within the next few years?
Luke Hawx: It’s definitely picking up again. The wrestling world is booming; WWE is back on top, it’s hot, people are getting back involved in the wrestling world, and especially with guys like Stone Cold and The Rock. It’s a good time for us to be coming up because we are part of a good farm system for WWE. We’re not under contract with WWE, but a lot of our guys have already worked for WWE and will continue working for WWE, and I think it’s a good deal because it’s hand in hand business wise. Wrestling will never die; it’s like boxing, or MMA, where it’s a sport that’s entertainment, that everyone loves and will keep growing and growing. We’re going to make sure we keep producing quality guys, and that’s what I’m here to do.
SwoleScience: Where do you see yourself and where do you see WildKat in the next five years?
Luke Hawx: Very hard to say. WildKat is actually growing and growing, and I see us expanding in the next few years. Who knows. I’d like to run more shows a month and take over more territories in the show and branch out all over Louisiana as well.
SwoleScience: What advice would you have for someone trying to get into the wrestling world?
Luke Hawx: Contact WildKat sports at WildKatSports@gmail.com. Also, body; take care of your body, looks are a big thing. You don’t have to be a big muscular guy but you have to be in shape. You can’t come in here smoking cigarettes, eating Doritos, and eating McDonalds. We expect the best. You have to be in shape and have some athletic ability. Most guys just like to sit home and play video games; if you’re one of those guys, then hit the gym.
SwoleScience: How many years do you think it takes to train to become a wrestler of professional caliber?
Luke Hawx: Well, your training never stops. It doesn’t matter if you’ve been wrestling ten, fifteen, or twenty years; you always train, and you still have to get in the ring. You have to work out and it’s just one of those things that if you don’t workout and train, you get rusty and you get sloppy. You have to be in that ring everyday. I’m fifteen years in and I’m pretty much at my school everyday working with these guys and training. I’m here working out, I’m not just here sitting around. It’s one of those things where you just never stop learning when you’re training. It also depends on the person;certain people adapt and pick things up a lot faster than others. The average, before you do a match, is typically 6-8 months.
SwoleScience: Do you think the crossover appeal of wrestling has helped wrestlers get into movies? as you said Stone Cold and The Rock, and now WWE have their own film subsidiary, do you think that has helped the crossover appeal of wrestlers getting into other forms of entertainment?
Luke Hawx: Very much so. I myself am involved in a lot of movies. I am a stuntman and actor. I did GI Joe 2, Escape Plan with Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sylvester Stallone, and more. So it works, and they go hand in hand, especially with the stunt work and acting. In wrestling you’re out there acting and performing in front of twenty to thirty thousand people, but sometimes it’s easier to perform just in front of the cameras, but sometimes it’s harder when it’s just you and somebody else. They go hand in hand, they definitely help one an other, and it’s good back and forth cross promotion.
SwoleScience: How common are injuries within this industry, from an inside view of it?
Luke Hawx: You’re always hurt. There’s a difference between being hurt and being injured. Like I tell my guys, you come in and you’re hurt; well, you’re hurt everyday because you’re hitting wood and steel, getting the wind knocked out of you, getting concussions, and headaches. You have to differentiate between injuries and being hurt. If you’re playing in the NFL or any other professional sport, you’re always going to be hurt or something wrong, but you have to know when something is seriously wrong. Most of the time though, everyone out there is wrestling hurt.
SwoleScience: Thanks so much Luke
Luke Hawx: Thanks for the interview.
Exclusive Gallery from WildKat Sports
Check out Luke Hawx’s Twitter Here
Check out WildKat Sports Twitter Here
Check out WildKat Sports Facebook Page
Check out www.WildKatSports.com
(Photos used with permission from Luke Hawx and WildKat Sports)
(This is an original post and exclusive interview that is copyright to SwoleScience.com, credited to the aforementioned author. Its reproduction is strictly prohibited. All rights reserved to the original authors of any quoted or embedded material)