As you can probably imagine, being a professional wrestler can be an incredibly rewarding job. It could bring fame, fortune and financial security for life once a wrestler gets to the top of their game. Although it can also be a pretty rough ride to get that point, with many of today’s stars having to struggle to get where they are today.
Despite the positive effects that pro wrestling can have on those involved, it can also take its toll on the wrestlers in a variety of ways. The constant battering of their bodies can lead to a wide range of health problems and injuries, while some might make bad decisions or let fame go to their head and get involved in activities they really shouldn’t. In other cases, they may live well outside their means and go on to suffer real financial hardship after they retire.
So, even though the vast majority of pro wrestlers will leave the sport as healthy and secure individuals, there are a few that have gone on to lose everything they worked so hard to get.
Better known by his wrestling moniker of Test, Andrew Martin blew several chances to make it big in wrestling. He was a rising star in WWE but failed to capitalize on his appearances, mainly due to a combination of poor representation and a failure to take part in the WWE Wellness Program. This program aims to detect health problems in wrestlers and ensure they are not using any illegal substances or abusing alcohol and prescription drugs. He would later move to TNA Wrestling but also failed to make a name for himself there. Sadly, Martin died in 2009 of an apparent overdose of oxycodone.
Shawn Michaels is considered one of the greatest wrestlers of all time and was one of the biggest draws for fans in the late 1990’s. However, he sustained a career threatening injury in 1998 when he was taking part in a Casket match against The Undertaker. He herniated several discs in his back, crushing one completely, leaving him believing that he would no longer be able to wrestle professionally. Michaels went into a downward spiral and began to heavily abuse drugs and has since admitted that he almost died during this time. Fortunately for everyone, he eventually recovered from his injury and drug abuse, allowing him to re-enter WWE.