The native of Battle Creek, Michigan, started off as a kickboxer. Highly skilled in the martial arts, a weightlifting fanatic and a big wrestling fan. He heard that the Sheik was training wrestlers in a nearby gym, RVD jumped at the chance. He went to Detroit, and the Iron Sheik liked what he saw. It was at this school that RVD first met Sabu.
After graduating with honors from the Sheik's school, RVD wandered the independent wrestling circuit down in Florida, until he was noticed by WCW. His stint in WCW was brief, with RVD doing nothing more than jobbing to the bigger guys. After six months, WCW dropped him, but All Japan Pro Wrestling picked him up. He spent the next year traveling back and forth between the United States and Japan.
1996 was a good year for RVD. He signed with Extreme Championship Wrestling (ECW) in January, and also appeared in the action movie Superfights. But when the movie career never launched, his wrestling career did.
He started feuding with Sabu, but they eventually joined forces to take on Doug Furnas and Phil Lafon at November to Remember in 96.
Things got interesting in 1997, starting with ECW's first Pay Per View, Barely Legal. RVD fought an excellent bout with Lance Storm, but that night, RVD shocked the crowd by saying he was ready, willing and able to work on Monday nights! This sparked controversy that only got worse as Van Dam crossed promotional lines twice, the night after joining Sabu and Bill Alfonso in their anti-ECW campaign he was spotted backstage at a WCW Monday Nitro event talking to a member of the nWo, then just two weeks later he made an appearance as Jerry Lawlers new anti-ECW sidekick on WWF Raw is War.
This lead to the first ECW invasion of the WWF. Jerry Lawler, Bill Alfonso, Sabu, RVD and Jim Cornette made attacks against ECW, only to get beaten by Tommy Dreamer, Taz and the Sandman.
In early 1998, RVD beat Bam Bam Bigelow for the ECW Television Title. This upset his friend Sabu, who was gunning for the title, and the two started to feud, again. This feud culminated in a tag team matchup, RVD & Lance Storm vs. Sabu and Chris Candido. During this match, RVD and Sabu swerved their partners and started to attack them. After devastating them, RVD and Sabu took off with the belts.
1999 was the year of Rob Van Dam. Having not lost the Television title, his flashy showmanship, and complete disregard for his body and health, RVD was on top of the ECW roster. He started an amazing feud against Jerry Lynn, which contained some great wrestling matches. He also feuded with the Impact Players, Justin Credible, Taz, Rhino, Masato Tanaka, amongst others.
2000 did not follow the good fortune that RVD had experienced in 1999. On January 30th, 2000 in Orlando, Florida, RVD broke his ankle in two places while performing a baseball slide. Two months later he was stripped of the Television title by Cyrus, the only time he lost it since he won it from Bam Bam Bigelow, almost two years previous.
RVD went back to ECW when he healed from his injury, unfortunately it didn't last as ECW went bankrupt in early 2001. He has since signed with the WWF and has already made a name for himself by putting on some great matches against Jeff Hardy.
His nicknames are Mr. Monday Night, Mr. PPV, and The Whole F'n Show.
RVD also appears in Black Mask II.
His finishers are the Van Daminator, the Van Terminator, and the 5 Star Frog Splash.
Some other moves Rob Van Dam does: step-over spinning heel kick, Rolling Thunder.
RVD has also graced the cover of High Times magazine.