5 WWE Superstars who battled dyslexia 

Lana is one of the few WWE Superstars who took the fight to dyslexia
Lana is one of the few WWE Superstars who took the fight to dyslexia

Being a pro-wrestler is not easy. This profession doesn't just take a toll on the body, but on the mind as well. Performing on a hectic schedule with required preparation, coupled with constant travel, can be quite challenging. While all pro wrestlers have to manage grueling schedules to perform, some of them have additional obstacles to battle.

Dyslexia is one such obstacle.

It is a disorder that causes problems with certain cognitive abilities used for learning, such as reading and writing.

To be specific, dyslexic people face trouble connecting the letters they see to the corresponding sounds those letters make. However, people who have it are often smart and have a creative approach towards any task they pursue.

Many athletes and entertainers of past and present have battled dyslexia with commendable courage and made it big in life with their determination and creativity.

On that note, let's take a look at 5 WWE Superstars who went toe-to-toe with their dyslexic troubles and thrived in life.

#1. CJ Perry (Lana)

CJ "Lana" Perry worked very hard in WWE.
CJ "Lana" Perry worked very hard in WWE.

Lana forged a global identity for herself while working for WWE from 2013 to 2021. From the role of managing Rusev (now Miro in AEW) to wrestling at WrestleMania, ''The Ravishing Russian'' stamped her presence quite well in WWE.

She battled Dyslexia from an early age but her determination propelled her towards accomplishing her goals. She is also well-known for being a talented dancer and actress.

A few years ago, Perry opened up about battling dyslexia in an interview with Celebrate Hilton Head. She said:

When I was in college, I found out I actually have a learning disability; I have dyslexia, so it took a lot of self-discipline for me, as a little girl, to find that resilience to keep reading slowly, even if it was just The Cat in the Hat—to keep on trying and not give up. I have always had to prove my doubters and naysayers wrong, and that has taught me resilience that I carry through entertainment, through WWE, through life in general. To me, obstacles are just a part of life. I hope to be able to encourage others to dream, you know, go for it. Don’t be afraid; chase your dream no matter what others say or think."

#2. Diamond Dallas Page

DDP at the WWE Hall of Fame Induction ceremony in 2017
DDP at the WWE Hall of Fame Induction ceremony in 2017

The WWE Hall of Famer hasn't just been a widely respected pro-wrestler but also an accomplished actor. Moreover, he is also a motivational speaker and a successful entrepreneur as the founder of "DDP Yoga". He is one of the few wrestlers to have performed for WCW, WWE, TNA as well as AEW where he had his last match in 2020.

It might shock you to learn that DDP was unable to read until the age of 30. In 2020, he opened up about his rough childhood and struggles of facing ADD and Dyslexia when he appeared on the "Chasing Glory with Lilian Garcia" podcast. He quoted:

The bottomline is, I grew up with ADD and dyslexia at a time when no one knew what the hell ADD or dyslexia was. They wanted me to read something on the board, I couldn’t read it, so I’d get myself in trouble and get sent to the principal’s office. What got me through school was being, just, I think being nice to everybody. Anytime there was any kind of talking in any kind of segment in school, I was all about it. And that’s what I learned, through repetition. I barely graduated with enough credits, so to speak, for high school. I didn’t really start to learn to read until I was 30.”
Here’s some Thursday afternoon motivation for you! “To be an overachiever you must first be an over-believer” 💥 catch me on episode 150 of the @patrickbetdavid podcast💥💎

Diamond Dallas Page overcame challenging hardships and also went on to write a book of his own called "Yoga For Regular Guys". What an inspiration!

#3. Otis

Otis in action on Smackdown Live against The Miz and John Morrison
Otis in action on Smackdown Live against The Miz and John Morrison

Otis has garnered praise from fans and veterans alike for his strong in-ring ability and terrific character grasp. While he fought dyslexia from an early age, he was resilient enough to do well in life. Before joining WWE, he was a splendid amateur wrestler. He won the national title at the Junior Pan-American Games, and a bronze medal in Greco-Roman wrestling at the Pan-American Games.

A few years ago, Otis revealed that he has been battling dyslexia his whole life on the "Chasing Glory with Lilian Garcia" podcast. He mentioned:

"I remember in high school, for example, they would make the troubled kids go with the disabled kids -they would put them together. The only time that I would be in a decent class was like history. My teachers were understandable with my reading dyslexia. I remember as a kid, if you remember like reading [in front of the class], the teacher goes, 'Alright there Otis, it's your time to read.' I'm like stuttering, and the kids would laugh. I've always been made fun of for the way I looked and because of my reading."

#4. Mark Henry

Mark Henry is one of the most respected names in the wrestling industry
Mark Henry is one of the most respected names in the wrestling industry

"World's Strongest Man" is well-known for being one of the most prominent names to feature in WWE. Mark Henry is also a powerlifter, an Olympic weightlifter and a strongman. He broke world records in lifting and made his presence felt globally when he debuted for WWE back in 1996.

The WWE Hall of Famer is not a man to mess with and this has been the case since his childhood. He was dyslexic from a very early age and school was quite difficult for him. After enduring a lot of rough patches, he shifted his attention to being the best version of himself. Needless to say, he made it happen!

In an interview with VladTV, Henry opened up about his childhood troubles and being dyslexic:

“At that point, it was like you’re no longer welcome in school, you’ve gotta do alternative school. I was already a bad student because I was an undiagnosed dyslexic. It was actually a blessing in disguise because that was the same time organized sports got introduced to me”.
HENRY BREAKS NATIONAL RECORDSin 1996 Henry wasn't just the best powerlifter in America, he was also the Captain of the Olympic team in the clean and Jerk! Amazingly, Henry could clean nearly 500lbs and he was making headlines constantly in the weight lifting world. #MarkHenry

With his sheer determination and hard work, Henry even went on to become a member of the International Sports Hall of Fame. Presently, he works for AEW as a prominent backstage personality.

#5. Vince McMahon

Vince McMahon earned a star on the "Hollywood Walk of Fame" .
Vince McMahon earned a star on the "Hollywood Walk of Fame" .

It's hard to believe, isn't it?

Yes, the man who created this mega empire called WWE is dyslexic. It's no secret that the billionaire is regarded as one of the most influential men in the world. His unbelievable work ethic and the ability to outwork everyone when at the age of 76 is simply unbelievable.

My definition of intelligence is not what you know, it's how you apply it.

It's astonishing that he started out with no money and went on to transform his creativity into a global corporation worth billions. However, it's just phenomenal that he achieved so much despite being dyslexic, without ever displaying a single hitch. The Boss of Bosses, indeed!

We got the AEW Women's World Champion to run down the Forbidden Door Card with us here.

Edited by Prem Deshpande


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