Professional wrestling is unique in the fact that it is an entire form of media that is controlled by a single man. Vince McMahon rules over the wrestling world and stamps out every pretender to his throne, using a mixture of ruthless business tactics and then hiring his enemies after they have been beaten down.
The fate of the WWE rests in the hands of a seventy-two-year-old man who has taken more blows to the head than the average executive.
This might account for the strange rules that WWE wrestlers have to follow, in order to keep their jobs. The pressure to please Vince is strong, as there aren't many wrestling promotions that can match the money given by the WWE to its top stars.
We are here today to look at the bizarre rules that most of the WWE stars have to follow in order to keep their jobs, which have leaked out to the world through numerous sources over the years.
From the usage of ropes during entrances to the rule that only John Cena is allowed to break, here are the 15 Crazy Rules WWE Stars Are Forced To Follow!
15 No Jumping On The Ropes During The Entrance!
Every aspect of the WWE live shows is micro-managed by the writers, producers, and Vince McMahon, to the point where almost nothing happens on screen that hasn't been approved by several different people.
An official WWE document leaked out to the press in 2016 which detailed some of the bizarre and nonsensical rules that the commentators, managers, and wrestlers have to follow when they are on-screen.
One of the most peculiar rules listed in this document was a demand for wrestlers to not climb up onto the ropes when they are coming down to the ring as part of their entrance.
This was something commonly done by wrestlers in the past in order to get a reaction from the audience, yet it's not allowed anymore.
14 No Sneezing!
Sneezing is one of those experiences that is shared by the entire human race, yet it is outlawed within the WWE.
There have been several former WWE staff members who have talked at length about Vince McMahon's disdain for sneezing, to the point where he will chastise people for doing it on camera.
This extends to both the commentators and the wrestlers. This also extends to what goes on behind-the-scenes, as Vince will publically chew out anyone who dares to sneeze in front of him and will be enraged when he cannot stop himself from doing it.
The reason behind this hatred of sneezing is due to how Vince McMahon hates to lose control. We can see this in how he micro-manages the WWE and the numerous interviews where his competitive nature has been discussed.
13 No Getting Pregnant!
In the old days of TV shows; actresses would be fired if they became pregnant during the production of a show unless the producers were willing to write in a storyline about the pregnancy.
This is now illegal, which means that writers and producers will now have to figure out ways to film around a baby bump.
WWE stars have been fired in the past for getting pregnant, as the physical nature of the programming means that they can't safely be used on the shows. This happened to Dawn Marie in 2005, who was released from her contract while still on maternity leave.
Dawn Marie later sued the WWE and the case was settled out of court. She has yet to reappear on their programming and has not been inducted into the Hall of Fame.
12 No Ad-Libs!
The ability to be a great technical wrestler is secondary to becoming a huge star in the industry. The most important trait a wrestler can have is charisma, which manifests in their ability to cut promos that can excite or incite an audience.
Some of the most popular professional wrestlers in the history of the industry weren't that skilled in the ring, including Andre the Giant, Dusty Rhodes, and the Ultimate Warrior.
The infamous leaked WWE document states in no uncertain terms that all promos performed by the wrestlers must be approved by the company first.
This makes it a lot harder for the wrestlers to do their job, as they have to make a script sound exciting, instead of being allowed to play to their own strengths.
11 No Low Blows Without Written Approval!
Professional wrestlers have perfected the way to make it look like they are kicking someone in the groin without actually dealing any damage, which usually involves carefully hitting their inner-thigh instead.
Low blow spots have commonly been used by heel wrestlers and their managers as an easy way to get heat from the audience.
It is also a popular move used by female managers/wrestlers when they give retribution to male performers.
It seems that the WWE wants to keep a limit on how often the low blow spot is used in matches, as the infamous leaked WWE document states that it cannot be used without seeking approval from the management first.
This means that the wrestlers have to ask Vince McMahon for his permission to pretend to kick him in the McMahon family jewels.
10 No Foreign Objects Without Written Approval!
It isn't just low blows that are restricted within the WWE, as all spots involving foreign objects have to be cleared by management before they can be used in the ring.
Chairs and tables have been a common fixture in wrestling matches for years now. The WWE has toned down their usage by a lot, which has been a reaction to outside influences.
The numerous lawsuits concerning concussions has played a huge factor in chairs not being used in matches, especially when being used to hit someone in the head.
The new studies concerning the condition have also inspired this change, as we now know a lot more about the long-term effects of concussions.
This is also a reaction to the Chris Benoit tragedy, as it is believed that chair shots to the head played a role in the damage that had been done to his brain.
9 No Wrestling In Saudia Arabia (If You Are A Woman)!
The WWE has been trying to expand its influence to markets that it was previously unable to reach, which has been helped by the advances in streaming technology that allows anyone with an Internet connection to see their programming.
This has led to them trying to break into markets like China, India, and the United Arab Emirates.
The WWE has held several events in Saudi Arabia, but these have not included the female wrestlers on the roster. This is due to the laws of Saudi Arabia, which have prohibited any Divas matches from taking place on the WWE tour of the country.
The first WWE match involving female wrestlers in the United Arab Emirates happened in Abu Dhabi in 2017.
It involved Sasha Banks wrestling Alexa Bliss while wearing far more clothing than they normally do during their matches.
8 No Speaking Unapproved Words!
It's not just the wrestlers within the WWE who suffer from the wrath of Vince McMahon, as the commentators are scrutinized in the same manner.
An official WWE document has leaked online which gives very strict instructions to the commentators over what words they are not allowed to say during matches.
These include saying belts/straps (they have to call them championships instead) and not using the words; acrobatics, DQ, feud, war, the business, interesting, me, I, and talent.
These rules also apply to the wrestlers, as Vince McMahon publically chastised Braun Strowman backstage after he said that he wanted a "Title shot" on TV.
No one is quite sure of the rationale behind many of these decisions, but they have to be followed regardless.
7 No Posting On Social Media Without Approval!
The existence of social media has been a huge thorn in WWE's side, as their attempts to keep the product PG are constantly thwarted by the personal lives of their stars leaking out.
It must be hard to maintain a PG image when adult images and videos of their biggest stars keep falling into the hands of the press.
The numerous illicit leaks have forced the WWE to invoke a strict social media policy on their talent.
This has involved instructing every member of staff on the rules of cybersecurity and has ensured that the company has a hand in whatever gets posted to any official channel.
This was also created to try and prevent people from bashing the company using official accounts while they are still under contract.
6 No Dressing Like A Slob Outside Of Your House!
This might seem like a crazy idea, but the WWE wrestlers have to live by a strict dress code whenever they appear in public. This extends to any time when they are outside their house.
While many WWE wrestlers are allowed to wrestle while only wearing a speedo and a pair of boots in the ring, they have to always be dressed to impress when they are outside of the arena.
Lillian Garcia has revealed that the WWE on-screen staff & wrestlers have been privately condemned by Vince McMahon over their choice of clothing.
This led to an official code of conduct being created for the clothing that everyone associated with the WWE wears when they are out in public, which means that they always have to be dressed well in situations where they could meet the fans.
5 No Blading!
Blading is a term used by wrestlers to refer to the act of purposely cutting yourself in a safe manner, so as to draw blood during a match and make your wounds look more serious than they are.
One of the reasons that many wrestlers wore wristbands during matches was so that they could safely hide thin razor blades on their person so that they could cut themselves while pretending to shield their face.
Blading was once a popular move among wrestlers, but concerns over contagious blood diseases meant that the WWE has outlawed the practice.
If a wrestler is caught blading on camera then they will usually be fined or suspended.
The WWE will now turn their programming black & white during segments when a wrestler bleeds too much, in order to maintain their PG-rating.
4 No Continuing A Match After A Cut!
The rule involving blood and cuts in most combat sports is that a referee will stop the match if the wound happens above the eye.
If the cut cannot be closed, then the match is stopped, as the competitor cannot compete if he cannot see. Any cuts that happen below the eye are up to the referee's discretion, though any serious wounds will result in the match being stopped.
The WWE is now a lot stricter when it comes to cuts. The referees are instructed to end a match if they see a cut (unless it is a pre-planned spot, which rarely happens) regardless of what the wrestlers say.
If the cut can quickly be fixed, then the match can continue at a later point in the event if there is time.
3 No PG Swear Words!
A lot of the WWE's TV shows are broadcast live, which means that there is nothing to stop the audience from screaming obscenities and having them go out uncensored to the world, barring the WWE just cutting the audio feed.
There have been several WWE stars who have used mild expletives in their catchphrases, such as Stone Cold Steve Austin's use of the word "a**."
This kind of language doesn't fly anymore, and if you don't believe us, just ask Brad Maddox.
Brad Maddox was fired from the WWE because he called the audience "Pricks" while cutting a promo. This happened during an untelevised match, but Vince McMahon saw it and Maddox was gone from the company.
The decision was partly inspired by the fact that Maddox had gone off script, even though he was insulting the audience.
2 No Visiting Non-WWE Wrestling Shows!
The WWE is the most popular professional wrestling organization in the world. A few other wrestling companies exist, though they are nowhere near as popular as the WWE.
Companies like TNA, Ring of Honor, and CZW have their own fans, but they will likely never pose a serious threat to the WWE.
These other wrestling federations can be dangerous to the career of WWE wrestlers, as being seen at the event of a rival company is a sure way to get fired. This happened to a member of the tag-team known as The Highlanders.
One of the members of the team was spotted at a recording of TNA IMPACT! and his face was shown on their TV broadcast. This would cause a major rift between The Highlanders and the WWE, which eventually resulted in their departure from the company.
1 No Yea-Boo Spots (Unless Your Name Is John Cena)!
Not all wrestlers are created equally. When you are as big of a star as John Cena, then there are specific rules that don't apply to you.
John Cena may have been the face of the WWE for a long time, but there was still a vocal contingent of the fanbase that would boo Cena whenever he would do something.
He was more of a polarizing figure than Hulk Hogan or Stone Cold Steve Austin was when they were the top guys in the company.
The leaked WWE rules document states that wrestlers aren't allowed to perform the "Yea-Boo" spot unless they are John Cena.
This is a situation where two wrestlers punch each other, while the audience either cheers or boos in response.
It seems that John Cena's clout within the WWE is so strong that he is able to claim entire spots to himself. It's no wonder that he is often booed during the Yea-Boo spot.
Can you think of any other insane rules that WWE stars are forced to follow? Let us know in the comments!