From wrestling and bodybuilding to professional dodgeball and modeling, Melissa Coates is far from your average girl.
Though “The Big Event” features some legendary wrestlers, some unforgettable divas, Playboy models and more… there’s only one Melissa Coates.
She began lifting weights as a 15-year-old as she trained for tennis. Soon, her focus turned to bodybuilding and the head-turning Coates never looked back—her chiseled frame makes her stand out in any crowd.
“I’ve been a successful bodybuilder and cover girl fitness model,” said Coates, who has won the Jan Tana competition and finished highly in the Ms. Olympia contest and the Arnold Schwarzenegger Classic.
One of the top female bodybuilders and fitness models in the world, she has also been featured in swimsuit and lingerie layouts. She has appeared in Muscle and Fitness, Flex Magazine, Ironman, Muscular Developmental and MuscleMag.
Coates has made her mark in the wrestling world, after catching the eye of former WWE announcer Kevin Kelly. She headed to Massachusetts and joined Killer Kowalski’s Pro Wrestling School. She eventually headed to the WWE’s developmental territory, Ohio Valley Wrestling. Coates became a well-respected wrestler and even appeared at a WWE pay-per-view in 2005, when she participated as the only female in Chris Masters’ “Master Lock Challenge”.
She said her time with Kowalski was great. “He loved girls with muscle,” she said. “He was like a grandfather figure.”
Recently, Coates has been wrestling on the independent scene, and earned recognition in Pro Wrestling Illustrated by being named to the publication’s Top 50 Women’s Wrestlers in 2010 and 2010.
Fans may remember Coates for her time in Extreme Dodgeball on Game Show Network. She participated on a team called the Barbell Mafia—which featured well-built athletes mostly from the bodybuilding industry. The league was filled with “gimmick” teams, Coates said. Other teams include the Sumo Storm—including players that all weighed over 400 lbs—and the accountant-led Certified Public Assassins.
The curvy and well-cut blonde says her best attribute was dodging.
“I was a very good dodger—much more than a thrower,” said Coates, who estimated that could throw 40 miles per hour. “There were special rules that if you were the last person standing on your team and you dodged successfully a few times, you then regenerated your entire team. I did this several times for my team and so was somewhat proud of myself for that!”
She joined the league in 2004 and played for two seasons, before the league became more competitive, as producers added professional dodgeball players to rosters.
“It was an awesome time and a lot of fun,” she said. “Too bad it ended up being so serious. I’m a good athlete, but I’m also into the show element of things.”
Adding to her diverse resume, Coates has even appeared in film.
“I’m actually in a film that is premiering at the NYC Winter Film Festival,” Coates said. “A Story About Ian is a very deep and thoughtful indy short. I have an entertaining cameo in the film.”
Though she has taken on many different endeavors, Coates may be best known for her impeccable physique and her wrestling career.
“I am able to keep myself in shape, stay somewhat on a rigorous diet and still dig deep to get that energy and enthusiasm up when I have a wrestling show,” said the attention-grabbing blonde.
Coates has a 2013 “I <3 NY” calendar available at www.melissacoates.com. Proceeds are going to Hurricane Sandy relief efforts.
The wrestler/model/bodybuilder/actress is excited to see fans on March 2 at LaGuardia Plaza Hotel in East Elmhurst, N.Y.
“I love the opportunity to meet up with the fans on a one-to-one level,” she said. “Events like these I get to relax and chat more with people. Some of the fans are pretty interesting characters, too! This is a great opportunity to interact with the fans.”
If you meet Coates on Saturday, you certainly will not forget the encounter.
“I enjoy chatting with the fans, joking around with them, sometimes scaring them a little with my bad-girl persona and doing a little flex of my biceps or pecs,” she laughed.
She will be meeting and greeting fans at “The Big Event”. Come to the event and meet Melissa, get her autograph and take a photograph with this one-of-a-kind girl!
Who else will be at “The Big Event?