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Georges St-Pierre admits fighting during a pandemic would be ‘hard,’ but it would be equally tough on everybody

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Esther Lin, MMA Fighting

Georges St-Pierre always found a way to stay creative in his training camps while preparing for upcoming fights.

The former two-division UFC champion dealt with all sorts of adversity during his fighting career, including multiple knee surgeries. But he always found a way to come back stronger. At one point, St-Pierre even introduced gymnastics into his routine as he got ready to fight as he constantly sought out new ways to stay one step ahead of his opponents.

While he retired from active competition more than a year ago, St-Pierre has never stopped training, even during a global pandemic.

The COVID-19 outbreak has forced gyms to close and the practice of social distancing makes it almost impossible for fighters to train or spar like normal. But St-Pierre said the pandemic has just forced him to find new and inventive ways to stay in shape, even if he can’t get to the gym.

“As a martial artist, you always find a way to be creative,” St-Pierre said during a recent Instagram live session with Tyron Woodley. “Even if you cannot go to the gym, you can find a way to train and do your work. There’s many ways to do it.”

Fighters have continued to train during the pandemic with many hoping to return to action sooner rather than later.

The UFC just recently postponed all upcoming shows, but the promotion is currently targeting a return to action within the next month. UFC president Dana White has even procured a private island where the promotion is building an infrastructure where they can hold fights in the near future.

None of what’s happening in the world makes it easy on fighters staying ready to compete but St-Pierre believes the disadvantages would be shared by everybody involved.

“It would be hard, however, you have to take it that way,” St-Pierre said. “It would be hard for everybody. It would be equally as hard for your opponent. So you’re both at a disadvantage in a way, you know what I mean? You’re going to have to be creative. Sometimes the person who is the most creative, the one that can adapt the best with an opponent can have the most success.

“When you’re fighting someone, the perfect way to prepare for someone is to become his perfect antagonist. In a situation like this, the same thing here, you’re taken out of your comfort zone and you each have to find a way to make your training and your preparation and to perform, which is very hard but you have to think about your opponent will go through the same thing.”

It remains to be seen if the UFC will be able to promote shows during the global pandemic with stay-at-home orders still issued in most states around the U.S.

White still hopes to get back to business in the near future with a huge number of fighters on the roster staying ready just in case they get the call but there’s no exact timeline when the next UFC show will happen.