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the written word

A collection of news articles, published books and academic articles relating to the controversial subject of Backyard Wrestling


A Scar is born

Benjamin Leatherman -  July 3, 2003 

Phoenix New Times


Backyard Wrestling: Don't Try This at Home

ABC News - August 29, 2001

The Backyard Wrestling Link was mentioned in this article


Backyard Wrestling Has Come to Brooklyn

John Ambrosio August 23, 2016

Bedford + Bowery


State gives body slam to backyard wrestling

Mike Farabaugh -  October 7, 2000

The Baltimore Sun


"Extreme" wrestling ring on the ropes - 

This clothesline is not what neighbors had in mind

Anthony Rifilato -  September 12, 2002

Nassau Herald


Student News: Backyard Wrestling Organization

Angel Santiago, Cole Sclafani -  January 3, 2020

Fox 61 News


'We love pain and we love doing this'

July 12, 2005

CBC News


Blood Sport - Local backyard wrestling teeters between athletics and maniacal violence.


Leah Sottile - July 6, 2010

Inlander Magazine

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Backyard Empire (Paperback)

Alex Hutchinson -  2005

Jason would do anything to turn his misfit group of backyard wrestlers into a profitable Independent federation. The local police try to stop his extreme storylines but the real danger was the stunts that took place in the ring. Shattered elbows, facial burns and even a car accident present the group with expensive injuries but it's not enough to stop them. Will the Extreme Backyard Alliance make itself nationally known or will someone have to die in the ring before this madness has ended?

Click here for a 43 page preview on Google Books

Buy it on Amazon

Extreme Backyard Wrestling: Dangerous Trend Sweeping Suburbia


January 31, 2010

CBS News

From smart fan to backyard wrestler: Performance, context, and aesthetic violence

S. Elizabeth Bird

Fandom: Identities and communities in a mediated world, ed. C. Sandvoss, L. Harrington, & J. Gray, (pp.165-176), New York University Press, January 2007

Research Gate

Backyard wrestling starting to grow in Saint John

July 12, 2005

CBC News

Pro Wrestling Kids' Style: The Most Amazing Untold Story in Professional Wrestling History (Ebook/Hardcover)

Shawn "Crusher" Crossen -  2005

Back in 1984 at the age of 14, Shawn created his very own 'Kids Pro Wrestling' league. And for the next five years, he would continue to grow this league into a huge national success making it bigger then any of them could have possibly imagined. At a very early age, Shawn showed true leadership skills with a remarkable business savvy that has since never been duplicated. Now, for the first time, he has come forth with a true story about his youthful dreams and accomplishments so incredible, you may find it hard to believe that it really actually happened.

Click here for 35 page preview on Google Books

Buy it on Amazon

Group Pins Hopes On Wrestling League

Brandon Wray - October 1998

Chronicle Telegram

Kids These Days: Facts and Fictions About Today's Youth

Karen Sternheimer - Rowman & Littlefield, 2006 (167 pages)

Click here for the backyard wrestling segment of the book (free)

Available on Google Books

Please Don’t Die

Lindsay Gibb - July 26, 2011

Broken Pencil


Slipped Discs: The Backyard movie review

Jim Ridley - December 4, 2003


Nashville Scene


Halftime Heat 1999 made me a backyard wrestler

Brent Brookhouse - February 1, 2019

Cageside Seats


Backyard Bloodbath​

Bob Norman - April 5 and April 12, 2001

Broward Palm Beach New Times

Part One

Part Two


Backyard brawlers bringing their wrestling act to downtown San Jose

Eric Kurhi - October 4, 2015 


The Mercury News

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The Backyard: Chaos and Scar Interview

Stephen Ashfield - July 27, 2004

Wrestling 101


The savage saga of Backyard Wrestling

Sam Slaughter - February 2004

The Phoenix Providence

Part One

Part Two


Backyard Anthropology

Ralph Rugoff - August 2, 2006

View the film here (Backyard wrestling starts at 50 minute mark)

Walker Magazine


Wrestling shows at NE Phoenix home raided


Michael Ferraresi - September 9, 2008

Arizona Republic


The Glorious Reign Of Female Applesauce Wrestling Has Ended

Rick Chandler - September 9, 2008



Backyard Wrestling and Air Guitar

Jonathan McNamara - June 30, 2008

Click here for picture slideshow

Phoenix New Times

Backyard wrestling trial opens in Carroll

Sheridan Lyons - February 1, 2001

The Baltimore Sun

Backyard Wrestling - All Pain, No Brain

Sam McManis - December 1, 2001

San Francisco Chronicle

Kids are trying this at home! 

Rick Reilly - February, 2001

Sports Illustrated

Wrestlers throwing caution from ring

Jenny May - June 22, 2002

The News Herald


Mr. Fantastic, Super-duper Star

Alec Hanley Bemis - June 5, 2003

LA Weekly


Lucha Libre: Mexican street wrestling

Matt Dayhoff - August 25, 2012

Journal Star Photo Blog

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Sport takes a back seat to stories in `Backyard'

Janice Page - January 9, 2004

The Boston Globe

'Backyard Wrestling' - Award of Excellence

Bryan Patrick - The Sacramento Bee

Pictures Of The Year International

Mat men have big dreams for wrestling organization

Paul Tackett - August 22, 2001

Tulsa World


A Video Artist Mines the Sweet Drone of Suffering

Michael Joseph Gross - December 4, 2004

Watch the film here (Backyard wrestling at 50 minute mark)

The New York Times

The Backyard Wrestler: The Life and Times of Aston Crude (E-Book)

Aston Crude - 2020

The story of Australian Backyard and Professional wrestler, Aston Crude. At 12 years old in 1999, wrestling at parks and in backyard across Western Australia, Crude eventually fulfilled his dream (which ultimately became a nightmare) of being a professional wrestler.

Buy it on Amazon

Full of Fight​

Susan Carpenter - November 9, 2000

Los Angeles Times

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The Backyard Wrestling Resource's guide to Backyard Wrestling (E-Book)

Kelcey Coe - 2006

An in-depth guide on creating, performing and perfecting your own underground backyard wrestling federation.

This was assembled in 2006 by Kelcey Coe and released for free to anyone seeking training in professional wrestling moves and techniques, building your own ring or arena from scratch or create movie-standard makeup and special effects.


Over 1300 pages long, some parts are cringey or downright dangerous. Read at your own risk!

Available for free on the Internet Archive or here

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Professional Wrestling (E-Book)

Louise I. Gerdes - Greenhaven Press, 2002

Backyard Wrestling Is Growing In Popularity

Chapter 8, Pages 54-57

Daniel B. Wood

Available for free "rental" on the Internet Archive


The Big Book of Pop Culture (E-Book)

Hal Niedzviecki - Annick Press, 2007

Backyard wrestling is featured in this D.I.Y pop culture publication. 

Chapter 7, Shocking the System, Pages 162- 165

Available for free "rental" on the Internet Archive


Local pro wrestler hits the big time

Jason Smith, November 3, 2003, Page 14

The Spoke

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Hello I'm Special (E-Book)

Hal Niedzviecki - City Light Books, 2006

Douchey attempt to shit on backyard wrestling from someone that sounds like they didn't have much fun in their life. 

Chapter 1, Pages 3-7

Available for free "rental" on the Internet Archive


Backyard Bloodbath

Seamus McGraw - May 2002, Pages 102 - 106

Spin Magazine on the Internet Archive 

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Gender, Race, And Class In Media (E-Book)

Gail Dines and Jean M. Humez - Sage Publications, 2011

From Smart Fan to Backyard Wrestler

Lawrence B. McBride and Elizabeth S. Bird

Chapter 63, Pages 582 - 589

Available for free "rental" on the Internet Archive

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Yard Wars: A Careful Review

Michael Garritty - St. Josephs College Observer, April 17, 2008

The Observer on the Internet Archive 


Backyard Wrestlers Beat Each Other Bloody

Scott Burton - November 20, 2002

ABC News


The Backyard Wrestling Diaries

William Gullo - May 31 2012

Bleacher Report

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How Backyard Wrestling Inspired the Creation of Wise Eats

Wes Wise - October 2, 2018

Article One

Article Two


Underground Wrestling Alliance Grows in Popularity

Jennifer Wadsworth - January 7, 2014



Under The Ropes

Phill Feltham with Victor Penney - May 1, 2012

Broken Pencil


Wrestling with Violence: Desensitization to violence through viewing professional wrestling

Kevin D. Williams, 2002

University of Georgia

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San Jose’s Underground Wrestling Alliance Kicks Open the Doors at the Ritz

Jay Edgar - August 6, 2021

San Jose Inside


'The Backyard': Masochism Begins at Home

Michael O'Sullivan - October 31, 2003

The Washington Post


Backyard Wrestling - Will You Flip Or Fall For It? 

Alex Marvez - June 8, 2001

South Florida Sun Sentinel

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Wrestling with Violence

August 3 2002



Extreme Wrestling: The Home Version

Kevin Thomas - September 5 2003

Los Angeles Times


"B-boy" Benjamin Garza danced to improve children's lives

Ingrid Wilgen - April 17, 2016

My San Antonio


Backyard wrestling finds a home and a following in Warwick

Matthew Frank - March 8, 2001

The Cranston Herald


Teens risk lives in copycat craze

October 26 2003

Wales Online


Extreme Wrestling: Sometimes-Fatal Fad

January 31 2002

CBS News


The Backyard isn’t safe anymore

Peter Crimmins - September 13, 2002

The Berkeley Daily Planet


Backyard Barbarians

Genevieve Roja - October 12 2000

Metro Active

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EBD is extreme family-fun entertainment

Jadi Zhoui - August 10 2020

Fort Madison Daily Democrat


Teen is burned while wrestling in yard

September 10 2005

Tampa Bay Times


Seven charged in backyard wrestling case

Sheridan Lyons - November 8 2000

The Baltimore Sun


Taking Bumps: Secrets of an Ypsilanti-based training school for professional wrestlers

James Dickson - March 21 2010

Ann Arbor News


Local grapplers rip it up

Jay Heater - August 3, 2008

Journal Review

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