She is beautiful and strong. She is also a Knockout, literally and figuratively. This woman has been a prominent figure in professional wrestling for quite some time. As Double G Sports celebrates Women’s History Month, we honor those who have made an impact for women in sports. This woman goes above and beyond to raise the bar, or in this case, belt.
I had the honor to interview a great performer from TNA Wrestling. You can watch her on Impact Wrestling on Pop TV every Tuesday at 9pm. She is a two-time TNA Knockouts Champion, and a founder of The Beautiful People. From the Big Apple, this…is Velvet Sky!
Double G Sports: What made you get into professional wrestling?
Velvet Sky: I’ve always had an athletic background, since I was 7-years old. I played on a softball team in middle school, and in high school I did softball, cheerleading, cross country and track. I was pretty athletic and on the go. Around the time I got into high school was when the professional wrestling industry was at its highest. It ended up catching my interest, thanks to the Attitude Era. In high school, “what is it you want to do with your life?” became a daily question. I was in college for a year and a half, and I wasn’t enjoying it. I put it on hold to become a wrestler and I don’t regret it. I always knew I could go back to it when the time came. This business has a shelf life. It’s easier to join wrestling at a younger age, when it’s not as hard to go forward with it. I ended up putting my eggs into the wrestling basket. I was in the Indies for years paying my dues, sometimes not getting paid at all. I never gave up, and thankfully six years into my indie career, I got an invitation from TNA to join their family. Hard work, persistence and determination paid off. Once I have my sights set on something, there is no “No” for me.
DGS: It seemed to have worked well considering where you are today.
VS: I definitely agree.Looking back, I wouldn’t change anything. When you’re young there’s a lot of pressure on you. My parents supported my decision because they saw my determination. All I could think about is that I should be training to do what I love, instead of being trained to do what I don’t love. That’s when my passion stood out to me.
DGS: Do you think there are any obstacles for women in professional wrestling?
VS: Women today have definitely left their mark on the business. More and more women are making headlines and history. In what used to be (and technically still is) a male-dominated business, women are being more respected in a “man’s world”. Back in the day, women’s matches were considered the sideshow. Now they are main eventing, while their matches are getting good ratings on shows. Women have worked hard to make a name for themselves. It’s really cool to see women who were strictly managers and valets become something more. They are being looked at as equal now. I’m super excited to be a woman in the professional wrestling world.
Velvet, in regards to women dominating in other sports: Absolutely! A prime example: Ronda Rousey comes to mind. She’s main eventing all of these fights. When has that ever happened? People have always bought the PPV’s for the men’s bouts, and now she’s been carrying PPV’s on her back. It’s cool to see women around the world making history, providing headlines and representing all of the other women out there.
DGS: Who is your dream opponent?
VS: I have always wanted to work with Amy Dumas (Lita). She was someone I looked up to when I was starting in the business. I remember watching her when going to a wrestling show, the night she debuted actually. She was the total package as far as a woman goes; guys and women loved watching her. Lita’s style was unique, and that made me go forward with my decision to become a professional wrestler. I’d rather have her on my team though. I believe we could make a cool pairing. Maybe we can face Angelina (Love) and Trish (Stratus). We could definitely have fun doing so. Or maybe we can have a Team Bestie (Trish and Lita) match against The Beautiful People (Angelina and I).
Velvet in Regards to Intergender Wrestling: I think it’s cool and definitely fun to do. I always like to mix it up with the guys when I can. I’ve had a couple of matches in TNA where I was facing off against The Young Bucks, Robbie E, Kaz and Daniels. Each time it’s a different experience and it’s always a competitive matchup. I’m definitely a fan of Intergender Wrestling.
DGS: What does the future hold for Velvet Sky?
VS: The future is definitely wide open for me. I work hard every day to improve myself. I’m going to keep going forward in the professional wrestling industry. I am currently enrolled in school as well and working towards my degree.Velvet Sky is just going to keep on going strong every single day.
DGS: Any advice for those who want to be in the wrestling business?
VS: Make sure you plan on achieving an education as well. You can work so hard towards your dream or goal, but not everyone gets a break in this business. Make sure you have that backup plan. If you can’t perform anymore, you then have to think about your next move. You can’t wait until the last minute. It’s very important to have an education. A simple piece of paper can be the difference between making and not making a living. I’ve seen a lot to the point where I can give advice on certain areas. I know it’s needed.
DGS: If you could send a message to young girls who are aspiring to be athletes, what would it be?
VS: Take care of yourself, and nourish your body. There are always standards that you have to be the skinniest, and its like, “C’mon”. Just take care of yourself, and stay true to you. I just want to see everyone do good. I don’t want to see anyone fall to any standards or expectations.
Velvet Sky’s final thought, especially for the younger generation aspiring to be pro wrestlers/athletes: There was something that was drilled into my head from my trainer that I’ll never forget, which I’ve seen lacking in a lot of up and comers. Possibly the best advice to give is: Always keep your ears open and your mouth shut. Listen more and talk less. I will never forget that. In this business, you want to absorb everything like a sponge. Listen more than you talk, it could get you in trouble if you don’t. Take it from me (laughs). I still appreciate advice and I’m still learning. I thank the people that have passed down advice and knowledge to me, from inside and outside the ring.
I’m very grateful for everything that I’ve gotten to accomplish in the business and I wouldn’t change anything about it.
For all of our 2016 Women In Sports Interview Series features, click here.