Ex-Boxing champion Heather Hardy hints at retirement from combat sports after ‘Taking too much brain damage’

Heather Hardy hints at retirement from combat sports I've taken too much brain damage

Former boxing world champion, Heather Hardy has indicated she is likely finished from competing in combat sports, citing the effects on her health as a result of taking “too much brain damage” over the course of her career.

Hardy, 42, a former WBO featherweight world champion in professional boxing, has been sidelined since he one-sided unanimous decision defeat to Puerto Rico favorite, Amanda Serrano back in August of last year, in her unsuccessful pursuit of world titles. 

Heather Hardy Boxing 2
Mandatory Credit: Sarah Stier

An alum of Bellator MMA to boot, Hardy had competed four times under the promotion’s banner, most recently dropping a TKO stoppage defeat against Taylor Turner back in 2019.

And signing with the BKFC (Bare Knuckle Fighting Championship), Hardy was scheduled to headline BKFC 61 this weekend in a bantamweight clash with flyweight champion, Christine Ferea, however, has withdrawn from the pairing.

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Heather Hardy reveals battle with “brain damage” amid combat sports career

Furthermore, on social media this week, Brooklyn native, Hardy revealed she was dealing with the health effects of “taking too much brain damage” – indicating that her lengthy tenure in combat sports was likely over.

Heather Hardy hints at retirement from combat sports I've taken too much brain damage
Mandatory Credit: Esther Lin – MMA Fighting

“My fight for May 11 is off,” Heather Hardy posted on her official Instagram account. “After my fight last summer with Amanda, my vision remained blurred for a few days. I went for an MRI and to get my eyes checked while I was still in TX and it was diagnosed the after-effects of a concussion. 6-8 months I should be fine. So basically I needed a fight, and it never got better.”

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“My daughter is in college. Everyone thinks I made millions in my career but I didn’t, I went paycheck to paycheck keeping that kid in the best neighborhood so she could go to the best schools. And I needed to take the fight, so long story short a month into training for Christine and everything got worse with my sight.”

“I was down to 123 pounds because I couldn’t eat, I wasn’t sleeping I was so weak. I hadn’t told anyone how bad it was, not my boyfriend, not my coaches. I thought I could make it through the ten-minute fight, but after a very light sparring session I couldn’t see shit for two days. I didn’t eat or sleep Friday to Monday, and I knew I was too weak to do this shit. After finally seeing a doctor, he said I’ve had too many concussions.”

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“When you have a concussion, a piece of your brain dies and you never get it back. Imagine that? In ten years I’ve had too much brain damage. I can’t get any more or else I won’t be able to see. No running, no jogging, no jumping rope, and no getting hit in the head. So I said the thing ya know what that means.”

Heather Hardy
Mandatory Credit: Sam Hodde

Boasting a 24-3(1) professional boxing record, over the course of her career, Hardy had turned in notable victories over the likes of Shelly Vincent, Calista Silgado, and Taynna Cardoso to name a few.

What are your thoughts on Heather Hardy’s decision to likely end her combat sports career?