Tamborini, R., Skalski, P., Lachlan, K., Westerman, D., Davis, J., & Smith, S. (2005, June). The Raw Nature of Televised Professional Wrestling: Is the Violence a Cause for Concern?. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 49(2), 202-220. Retrieved July 15, 2009, doi:10.1207/s15506878jobem4902_4

This study examined physical violence portrayed in a sample of televised professional wrestling. Trained research assistants coded the frequency of violent interactions, perpetrator characteristics, and contextual features (extent of violence, use of weapons, consequence of violence, reasons for violence, and reward for violence). Wrestling was compared with a sample of prime-time television from the National Television Violence Study (Smith, Nathanson, & Wilson, 2002). Findings show that the extent of violence in wrestling is significantly greater than other prime-time genres and that wrestling more often portrays violence as justified, likely to go unpunished, and unlikely to produce extreme harm. Overall, wrestling presented violence in amounts and contexts linked with increased risk of harm to viewers. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved)(from the journal abstract)