Kaia McKenna Speaks Out About Her Experience in AEW, Her Injury and Return, Future Goals
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Rising star “The Good Witch” Kaia McKenna joined PWMania.com for an exclusive in-depth interview. During the conversation, McKenna opened up about her recent injury and recovery. She also discussed her experience in AEW and more. Y
How her injured happened:
“Well, I learned my lesson on why you should not be a bad witch. Why you should always be a good witch. I went to strike Mike Bennett in the back when he was attempting to cause some harm to Bravo on AEW in October. And his back is like sheet metal. I’m not even kidding. I hit his back, and my shoulder went. And I was like, Well, okay, that happened. It was wild. It’s totally like a freak accident, not my fault. Not his fault, not anybody’s fault. I don’t know if it was the right angle, the right amount of force. I have not been able to figure it out. But I did re-dislocate my shoulder in that instance, there was a clip going around for a while if you don’t mind being grossed out. You can check that out.
“We’re good. I was really concerned because obviously you have that type of injury happen again, and you’re like, “Okay, Did I did I re-damage something?” I just went through this grueling rehab process. I had surgery in February, all this stuff’s going through your head. So I did go visit the orthopedic surgeon and I did not sustain any further damage. Presumably, I have a small labrum tear just from the shoulder dislocating because that happens when your shoulder dislocates. But it’s not anything that I’m unable to fix with a little bit of physical therapy and some extra time in the gym. So that’s what I’ve been doing for the past two months is just letting everything resettle and doing as much as I can in the gym and physical therapy to get ready to come back in 2023.”
Her return to the ring:
“Probably late winter, we’re gonna say. I think that sometimes in wrestling, we all rush like we all don’t want to be away from it. We’re not desperate to wrestle, but we love it so much. We hate being away. And we rush ourselves back. Sometimes we don’t actually afford ourselves the time that we need to process injuries and handle them accordingly. So even though the surgeon said I’m kind of good to go, I am still gonna take an additional month to make sure everything is truly good to go from all standpoints. You know, my physical therapy is complete. I’m back to lifting the way I want to lift, I’m moving in the ring the way I want to move. And most importantly, like I’ve dealt with the injury mentally, and I’m in a good headspace to come back. I feel like sometimes we neglect the mental health aspect of being injured and maintaining a focus on trying to make all the physical repairs.”
Her experience in AEW backstage and in front of the fans:
“You know, in front of the audience is really interesting, because you would figure as like a little tiny, independent wrestler, you’re standing there in the Prudential Center, and there are 17,000 people, that would be very nerve-wracking. It was actually more comforting. Now, when there are like 150 people, and I know 50 of them, for some reason that’s more uncomfortable. I just remember standing in the ring, I was the first match on that taping, and I just thought, this is really cool. This is really awesome. It was just so neat. Like you could feel it, like maybe you couldn’t make out every single person’s face, probably not past the third or fourth row, right? But you could just feel the energy of the people and it was just like this, it was just like this refreshing breath of fresh air. It was very cool. I definitely enjoyed it and I’m probably the one weird person that was less nervous doing that than I am when I go to Brussels, a small indie show but here we are. So I thought that was really really cool. This is gonna make me sound like a huge mark but I was so excited that Paul Turner officiated my match because I watched so much Ring of Honor growing up and I just thought that was the coolest thing and he was so wonderful. I’m backstage and it’s really interesting because it’s very relaxed but they still have a very much have an order in which they do things and like how the day goes. It’s like when you’re there to do “extra” work, you’re just kind of there to do your thing and have your match and you just kind of like, keep to yourself, right, because you’re a guest in someone’s house is how I look at it. I feel like you have to be respectful of the fact that you are invited, and that it’s a privilege to be there. So I really enjoyed it. It was a good experience, I hopefully will get to have it again in the future. Maybe they’ll have me back now that I’m not injured. But I really enjoyed it. It was a very eye-opening experience for me to have in my career. Just to get to see how it operates at that level is just very, very eye-opening.”
McKenna also talked about breaking into the wrestling business, being a real witch, and much more. You can read the complete interview at this link.