The 44-year-old is known for putting his body on the line, and he initially rose to fame in a series of wild ladder matches and Tables, Ladders and Chairs bouts in which he took some crazy falls.
In a recent interview with Alex McCarthy of talkSPORT, Hardy named the worst bump he’s ever taken, and the answer wasn’t one of these unforgettable tag team matches against the likes of Edge and Christian or The Dudley Boyz. Instead, it happened during a match against Rob Van Dam on SmackDown in 2001. (The bump in question can be seen here.)
“That was my worst bump ever, if you’re talking about the one where I went through the table vertical? It was just straight to my back and oh my god, it knocked the wind out of me the worst ever,” said Hardy. “When it comes to bumps, that hurt the most as far as getting the wind knocked out. My lower back for the next few weeks.. Oh, it was rough. I was like ‘OK, I don’t think I ever want to go through a table vertically again’ and I didn’t.
“But, I just had to do it. ‘Just let me do it, I think it’s going to be alright.’ And then I went right through the framing to the floor and wow [laughs]. It hurt.”
Over 25 years into his professional career, Hardy’s body has taken a lot of punishment; as a result, he’s proactively trying to take care of it by doing yoga, among other methods of recovery.
“So I’ve done yoga for a while,” said Hardy. “Not all of it, I just picked my favourite ones that felt right for my body. Every morning, it’s the first thing I do along with my prayers and my meditation. “I do my yoga and cardio every morning when I’m able. There’s times where my neck and my back are beat up probably the most.”
Hardy pointed to his knee as one weak point because it was the target of his most recent surgery, but he emphasized that the current chapter of his career has been “really good.”
“My knee is weak – that was my last surgery,” said Hardy. “But yeah, overall, I can’t complain. For maintenance, after every match, I ice my neck and my back, maybe my knee if need be. I put heat on my back before a match and I ice those spots after a match and everything has been really good. It’s really amazing.”
Hardy continues to compete as a WWE Superstar; he was the runner-up in the Black Friday Battle Royal on the November 26 episode of WWE SmackDown. He has recently emphasized his hope to win the WWE Universal Championship and showcase a different side of himself as a character, but fans will have to wait and see what his future holds.