Sunday, November 11, 2007

Wrestling Trophies

The sport of wrestling has ancient roots. From Greco-Roman times to the World Wrestling Federation matches televised regularly, wrestling has kept viewers entertained and amused for centuries.

Wrestling is admired for many reasons. It can be a fun game or a serious win-or-lose competition, a commercial profit-making interest or a way to gain status. This is a weapon-free game, and the human body is used as weapon of combat.

There are different styles of wrestling. The main division is between amateur and professional wrestling. Amateur is widespread worldwide and has two types in the Olympic Games—Greco-Roman and freestyle. Freestyle evolved from the English Lancashire form. A similar style is called collegiate or folk style, and practiced in high schools and colleges in the U.S.A.

In amateur, freestyle and Greco-Roman differ in what holds are permitted. In Greco-Roman wrestling, wrestlers are permitted to hold and attack only above the waist. But points can be scored in both by following actions-takedowns, reversals, escapes, exposure, lifting and penalty points. A match can be won by period format, win by fall, win by technical fall, win by decision, win by major decision, and also win by injury. Illegal moves in amateur wrestling include biting, pinching and poking with the fingers, strikes, joint attacks, chokes, strangulations, suffocating, spiking, and attacking the genitals.

The most coveted wrestling trophies are those of the Olympic Games. The countries with leading wrestlers in the Olympic Games are Iran, U.S., Russia, Bulgaria, Hungary, Sweden, Finland, Turkey and the former Soviet states. In the United States, collegiate or scholastic wrestling is practiced as a school sport. The Dan Hodge Trophy is awarded to the outstanding College Wrestler of the Year. It was first awarded to T. J. Jaworsky of the University of North Carolina in 1995. The trophy is named after Danny Hodge, an outstanding wrestler from the University of Oklahoma from 1951-1954.

Professional wrestling is any tourney where wrestlers receive payments for participating. Historically, professional wrestling has involved matches with predetermined results. American professional wrestling is a performance art in which the wrestlers create an entertainment show by simulating a combat sport. Though it started as a sporting event, it dropped all pretensions of such and declared itself to be a purely entertaining starting with the World Wrestling Federation in the 1990s. It eventually changed its name to World Wrestling Entertainment.

Whether to entertain or amuse, wrestling trophies are sought after as they represent awards for fitness, agility and strength.

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