Work is one of the most commonly used terms in wrestling. It means many things:

  • First, any wrestling match is called a "work," and the wrestlers involved are said to work the match. This means that the fight was choreographed and the outcome was predetermined. A real fight is called a "shoot": this is the sort of thing that Lennox Lewis does. You won't be seeing a shoot on pro wrestling programs.

  • "Work" also refers to the time a wrestler spends in a match performing moves and maneuvers rather than lying around on the mat or in a "resthold." A resthold is a headlock or other stationary wrestling hold that is lightly applied and allows the wrestler to rest. The active part of the match is the work, and the more action there is in a match, the better the "workrate" and the better "workers" the wrestlers involved are. You will often see this term in a forum in which wrestling is discussed.

  • Finally, a "work" can refer to any trick the promoters are playing on the audience. Any time they're pulling the wool over our eyes, they are "working" us. Now, this might sound like a rather generally applicable term in wrestling, given that it's all fake. However, they're pretty good at this game, and there are often events that look like they might be "real" which are actually works.

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