Grappling Events in California

by Darlena Cunha

Whether you're looking for mat wrestling, mixed martial arts or professional wrestling a la World Wrestling Entertainment -- known simply as WWE as of 2011 -- California participates in events in all fields of grappling sports, local to worldwide. The state has venues dedicated solely to grappling sports, and frequently stadiums, casinos and concert halls adapt for the activity.


Wrestling is so popular that most counties in California have local group sporting events throughout the year for men and women, but especially for children and teens. San Francisco is home to the Bay Area Wrestling Association, which is housed at San Fransisco State University. BAWA holds events throughout the year for local wrestlers who are training for national competitions. In southern California, San Diego has a wrestling club, San Diego Wrestling, that hosts events particularly for veterans and seniors. The city also has a sister association to BAWA called the San Diego Wrestling Association.


World Wrestling Entertainment was scheduled to host "Smack Down" at Rabobank Arena in Bakersfield in August 2011. WWE also holds events in San Diego at the Valley View Casino Center, San Jose and Los Angeles. Although the schedule varies year to year, tours always make several stops in California at different venues. Events are so frequent that no matter where you live in the Golden State, you'll be able to find an event at a nearby venue throughout the year.

Mixed Martial Arts

Southern California has more than 900 Mixed Martial Arts schools, and almost all of them participate in events throughout the state. Mixed martial arts include all forms of grappling such as boxing, kick boxing, jiu jitsu, karate and wrestling. For professional MMA events, organizations such as Ultimate Fighting Championship, World Extreme Cagefighting, and Gladiator Challenge each hold multiple events in California throughout the year. In the summer of 2011, Gladiator Challenge hosts its Pro-Am Challenge at Soboba Casino in Jacinta. Xtreme Fighting also hosts events in California throughout the year.

Jiu Jitsu

The World Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Championships take place during the summer each year in Riverside, California. Parents watch as students of both Gi and No-Gi fighting styles duke it out to determine the champions of both genders and all weights and ages. San Jose houses a Jiu Jitsu and Kickboxing Academy for event training. In the spring of 2011, San Diego hosted the World Professional Jiu Jitsu Cup. This Cup is held at different locations every year with the event location unveiled just a few months before the tournament.

About the Author

Darlena Cunha has been a writer and editor since 2003. She has a Bachelor of Arts in journalism and a Bachelor of Science in biology from the University of Connecticut. Cunha is also completing her master's degree in mass communication.

Photo Credits

  • Comstock/Comstock/Getty Images