March 29, 2009|
Name: Adam Copeland
Height: 6ft 5in
Born in Ontario, Canada, in 1973, professional wrestler Adam Copeland made his WWE debut in 1998 under his ring name, Edge. Now the company's world heavyweight champion, he will defend his title at the 25th anniversary of WrestleMania in Texas this month.
Pantomime? I don't think so. What we do is a very physical form of entertainment. People who think wrestlers don't get hurt haven't watched us. I don't understand how you can see someone get thrown 10 feet and not think it hurts. We don't have crash mats, we don't have stunt doubles. I've broken my neck. Does that happen in pantomime?
Breaking my neck was scary. I've torn both pecs and both knees, but those injuries were just annoying. Breaking my neck was the real shock. Having screws put in there makes you think.
Size isn't that important. We run the gamut in wrestling, all shapes and sizes. Height will help, but being short isn't a deterrent - we have a guy, Rey Mysterio, who is 5ft 6in and 175lbs and can do things no one else can do; he's a human Spider-Man. We also have the giants, like the 7ft Big Show, my opponent at WrestleMania. Me? I fall somewhere in the middle.
I won my first wrestling lesson in an essay-writing contest. We had to explain why we wanted to wrestle. I think I just tried not to embarrass myself, while also showing how badly I wanted it - because wrestling was all I ever wanted to do.
When you first get in the ring, everything hurts. You learn to land on your back on the mat. That hurts. You learn how to bounce off the ropes. That hurts. Eventually you look around the ring and wonder, "Jeez, is there nothing in this contraption that doesn't hurt?"
Eventually you build up a resistance. Hitting the mat makes you foggy at first, it scrambles you, and it takes a while before you're able to get up and continue a match properly after being thrown. But at some point, your body adapts and you just gets used to it.
I probably should have considered it more before I dived through a burning table at WrestleMania 22. I got second-degree burns from that. What was I thinking?
All my tattoos subtly relate to a stage in my career. But there isn't one that represents Sexton Hardcastle [Copeland's firstwrestling alter ego, a womanising playboy]. I don't know what Sexton's tattoo would have been. Probably not something you can print.
Will I still be wrestling at 50, like Mickey Rourke's character in The Wrestler? Noooooo. I'll stop before it gets embarrassing.