Daniel Cormier says he had COVID-19 before his UFC 252 heavyweight title fight with the division’s reigning champion, Stipe Miocic.
During a recent interview with Yahoo! Sports, Cormier sang the praises of a product called the Oura Ring, which tracks health data and can help alert the wearer to potential health problems. The former two-division champion revealed that wearing the ring helped him realize he had COVID-19 and allowed him to get this health issue under control before his fight with Miocic.
For Cormier, the saga began when one of his teammates tested positive for the virus. While his own test results initially came back negative, the Oura Ring ultimately prompted him to double check.
“I started feeling a little sick,” Cormier explained. “Let me put it this way: I wasn’t sick, but I got a little tired and peaked. Monday comes, I go to practice and I spar and I worked out three times. I felt OK, but I was a little bit tired is, I guess, how I would put it. Now, let me go back for a second: The Wednesday prior, my readiness score was at 78, 79. The readiness score is what tells you how you are supposed to approach the day. When it’s low, it’s telling you to take a step back
“I’ve been using it for months now because my body needs to know if I’m going in the right direction. … On Monday night, Tuesday morning, I wasn’t feeling so good. My resting heart rate had been 50 beats a minute. Now it was at 57. My body temperature had changed.”
While the Oura Ring didn’t tell Cormier he had COVID-19, it did provide him with enough information to encourage him to see a doctor. Had he not done so, he believes his fight with Miocic could have been in jeopardy.
“The ring didn’t tell me I had COVID,” Cormier explained. “But the ring told me that something wasn’t right, and I used the information to make a decision to go see the doctor. I found out then that I had COVID, but the information I got from the ring allowed me to make the fight.
“This is not an excuse at all,” Cormier added. “Miocic won the fight and he fought beautifully. This is a thank you almost to Oura for allowing me to get to the fight. I might have just kept pushing and not known I had it. But I was able to take care of myself properly and then get back into training and compete for the heavyweight championship of the world. Without the ring, I don’t think that’s possible.”
The UFC recently entered into a partnership with Oura Health, the company that makes the Oura Ring. The partnership will be announced on Tuesday.
Daniel Cormier, who retired after losing to Miocic at UFC 252, was gifted an Oura Ring as part of the partnership.