A brief guide to the Lucha Libre, the mexican sport
Mexican wrestling, also known as Lucha Libre, is a highly traditional form of light entertainment, the Mexican Sport by excellence, complete with unreal quantities of spandex and sequins. But, just what exactly goes on at these rowdy spectacles? Here’s a brief guide to Lucha Libre, the main source of inspiration for our Vivi room.
To win one-on-one matches you must pin your opponent for a count of three, knock them out of the ring for a count of twenty, force submission, or get them disqualified. A less suggested fifth way or winning is with the excessive violence rule, in which the referee awards the clearly superior wrestler the title. As far as banned moves, the piledriver or martinete is definitively not allowed, but still frequently seen.
However the Lucha Libre rules are theory driven. They are rarely enforced in practice, principally due to the highly choreographed nature of the rounds.
The moves of a Lucha Libre round, while highly stylised, are still impressive to watch in action. They’re typically characterised by lots of flamboyant, aerial maneuvers and speedy, acrobatic combos. Many moves are named after the wrestlers that have perfected them and regularly use them to their advantage. A popular Lucha Libre moves include the plancha, in which a wrestler lays flat on their back in the ring and then gets jumped on from a the highest barrier of the diamond by their opponent.
The truth is not all the wrestlers were created equal. Some fall under the evil rudos category which are "the bad guys"; others are renowned técnicos, the heroes of the ring. You may also see female wrestlers (luchadoras), and the exotics (exóticos), who threaten their opponents' masculinity with their over the top campness.
No wrestler with mask will reveal his or her face or real name while in character. In fact, some matches include de-masking the loser, which brings great shame and loss of status for the luchador.
The Mask and Costumes
The principal garment for any wrestler include lycra, as well as sequins for the eccentric ones plus the masks. True honor goes into the mask and costumes of a wrestler. Lighter coloured costumes often indicate a técnico, and darker ones are indicative of rudos.
Sometimes the ones who don’t wear a mask have long hair, which can be also be used for bets in the ring.
Where To Watch
In Mexico City, definitely the best places to catch a wrestling match are the Arena México and the Arena Coliseo, you can buy tickets on Ticketmaster or right on the door.
However, here at La Palomilla we have an amazing option for you to live the full experience: Tuesday’s Lucha Libre, with our friends from Aura Cocina Mexicana, where you can taste mexican food, have an artesanal beer and then hit the Lucha Libre!
Aura Mexican Lucha Libre Experience
When: Tuesdays 5:00 pm
Where: Aura Mexican Cooking
Address: Just a few blocks from La Palomilla
Includes: Aura Three-course dinner paired with beer or agua fresca selection (vegan option available) and ticket to Lucha Libre (preferred seating).
Agenda: Dinner 5:00 - 6:30, 6:40 transfer to Arena México, 7:30 Lucha Libre, 9:30 aprox return to Aura.
Not included: Extra Food and beverages during the Lucha Libre.
Limited availability. #momentosaura