AEW Issues Huge List Of Banned Moves, Spots & More

A host of changes expected in All Elite Wrestling as new rules and regulations are revealed.

Eddie Kingston

AEW officials have issued a list of banned moves, spots and more within the company, and the list is long.

Fightful broke the story, putting together a fantastic report that noted;

"There were protocols developed by the AEW medical team, coaches and referees to help protect talent, staff, crew and fans. The document said that while there is always risk in pro wrestling, they wanted to minimize the risk without compromising the quality of the talent’s performances and ability to be creative.Specifically, a document was sent out that outright banned unprotected chair shots to the head, shots to the back of the head, buckle bombs and blind moves backwards into the turnbuckle, fencing responses (unnatural position of arms following a concussion), seizure sells, spitting, bleeding in the crowd, weapons or projectiles in the crowd, taking drinks or food from guests in the crowd, or physical contact with the crowd. We’re told that nothing with blood on it should be thrown into the crowd."

And that's not all.

Aside from the outright banning of the above, the report also provided a full verbatim list of spots, stipulations, gimmicks etc that require full approval by medical and coaches assigned to the match. The report moved to make clear the difference between the banned items and the following, bit all of the below now require pre-match approval.

- Spots and bumps on the ring apron and outside- Table/ladder/chair spots in and out of the ring (Only allowed with padding)Any elevated spots outside of the barricades (dives and ladder spots on stage, around the arena, and other places outside of the ring)- All piledriver/tombstone variations, including: sit down drivers, inverted/poison hurricarana and vertebreakers- High-risk dives or top rope moves (450, 630, double moonsaults, SSP, etc.) Intentional bleeding (of any sort, not just blading)- Throwing people into/through/over ring steps, commentary table, bell table, or guardrails/barricades Weapon usage:- Chairs, pipes, kendo sticks, hammers, ring bells, bats, chains, etc. Title belts- Thumbtacks, skewers, barbed wire, and other sharp/puncturing objects o Powders, aerosol sprays, or liquids- Throwing any weapons or objects- chairs, etc.- Choking/strangling with hands or a weapon or hanging spots- Injury spots or angles, whether or not medical is involved/called to the ring- Any physicality in the crowd or crowd brawling- Any physicality involving referees, managers, extras, celebrities, or special guests"

Drawing in the feeling from those internally who put the plan together as well as the roster of wrestlers impacted by it, the report added;

It was noted that the list was not a comprehensive one and could be adjusted by medical, legal and coaching staff. When approved, the moves are to be performed in accordance with safety protocols in place. One talent we spoke to said they believe this is a good move and will help streamline the show, avoid repeat spots and moves in general, and make more of the athletic spots that talent are capable of. It is also expected to help instill some authority to the coaches, and help production prepare for spots...most we’ve heard from agreed it was a necessary “tightening of the screws” as the company grows.

There's a great deal to still unpack about the list, and as noted, there could always be adjustments and changes along the way as the organisation feels out the new details. Expect more updates from talent as the rules take hold, and online debate will likely rage on the pros and cons for months to come as the on-screen product presumably shifts more in line with protocol.


Michael is a writer, editor, podcaster and presenter for WhatCulture Wrestling, and has been with the organisation over 7 years. He primarily produces written, audio and video content on WWE and AEW, but also provides knowledge and insights on all aspects of the wrestling industry thanks to a passion for it dating back over 30 years. As one third of "The Dadley Boyz", Michael has contributed to the huge rise in popularity of the WhatCulture Wrestling Podcast, earning it top spot in the UK's wrestling podcast charts with well over 50,000,000 total downloads. He has been featured as a wrestling analyst for the Tampa Bay Times and Sports Guys Talking Wrestling, and has covered milestone events in New York, Dallas, Las Vegas, London and Cardiff. Michael's background in media stretches beyond wrestling coverage, with a degree in Journalism from the University Of Sunderland (2:1) and a series of published articles in sports, music and culture magazines The Crack, A Love Supreme and Pilot. When not offering his voice up for daily wrestling podcasts, he can be found losing it singing far too loud watching his favourite bands play live. Follow him on X/Twitter - @MichaelHamflett