Technical sparring with son, Michał during the Summer Karate Academy.

Hanshi Tomasz Piotrkowicz

Tomasz Piotrkowicz – one of the precursors of karate in Poland and Central and Eastern Europe, holder of the 9th dan karate degree.

He was the first Pole to receive the title of „shihan” (professor of martial arts) from Japanese masters. In May 2014, he received from the Japanese the highest title in Japanese martial arts – „hanshi” (teacher of teachers). On January 1, 2021, promoted by the World Budo Federation to the 9th dan – only a few European budo masters hold such a high master’s degree in Japanese martial arts.

In 1970 he started practiced ju-jutsu on his own, in 1972 karate – being then one of the first and at the same time the youngest in Poland. During his studies at the University of Warsaw, he was a co-founder of the AZS karate section, he trained Shotokan karate and Korean Kyoksul style. In 1980 he completed the first official karate instructor course in Poland. In 1981 he was a judge of the First Polish Championship of the Polish Karate Federation. During his second studies at Agicultural University, he also founded karate section, which he coached for 7 years. Since 1991, he has been the head  – chief instructor of the Warsaw Karate Center, which he founded. Since then, he has taught various Japanese martial arts to more than two hundred later trainers (sensei) – black belt holders.

Sensei Tomasz Piotrkowicz

Sensei Tomasz Piotrkowicz has taught martial arts in several countries, including as a visiting professor in Japan. He trained American marines, businessmen, students and university employees, conducted instructor courses in karate and self-defense. He was also the president of the Polish Karate Association and the European Budo Association.

Among the many Japanese karate masters he trained with, he was most impressed by: Hideo Ochi, Tsuguo Sakumoto, Hirokazu Kanazawa, Hidetaka Nishiyama, Takemasa Okuyama, Fumio Demura, Takayuki Kubota, Isamu Arakaki, Minoru Higa, Morio Higaonna, Zenpo Shimabukuro and Tetsuhiro Hokama.

Among the numerous coaching and popularizing achievements in martial arts, it is worth mentioning that hanshi Tomasz Piotrkowicz organized the world karate championships for the first time in Poland in 199 and wrote five books – manual of martial arts: karate, kobudo, kenjutsu, battodo.

An interview with local television from Okinawa during training with the Arakai master at Budokan in Naha.
Bunkai Heian nidan with shihan Christopher Kotynski in Ireland.
Photo taken during battodo training in Osaka.
Tameshigiri show during the Matsuri festival, organized by the Embassy of Japan in Warsaw.

Among the many Japanese masters of samurai fencing with whom he practiced, he was most impressed by: Mitsuo Hataya, Takayuki Kubota, Toshishiro Obata, Shimeo Sato, Kunio Suzuki, Kosei Tabuchi, Mitsuhiro Saruta, Tetsundo Tanabe, Seiji Ueki, Yoji Yamanaka, Kinji Nakagawa.

His spiritual master will always be the kensei battodo Taizaburo Nakamura, whose grave he tries to visit during every visit to Japan.

Hanshi Piotrkowicz is currently one of the greatest samurai swordsmanship experts living outside Japan. He was the first sensei in Europe to master the intricate, masterful cuts with a samurai sword (mizu-gaeshi, tombo, kasumi). Currently, several prominent tameshigiri experts train at the Samurai School he founded in 2001.

For many years, hanshi Piotrkowicz has been studying martial arts throughout Southeast Asia and China and developing a new direction in bu-jutsu, which he gave the name Mushin-ryu. „Mushin” was formerly an honorable nickname for those samurai who, through inner purification and training of body and soul, went into battle ready for anything, even death. And thus they often became invincible.


Shihan Michał Piotrkowicz

Michał Piotrkowicz is a talented painter and art conservator who graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. His paintings have been exhibited at the Tokyo Metropolitan Art Museum, the Kosciuszko Foundation in New York and many art galleries in Poland.

Shihan Michał Piotrkowicz practices martial arts under the guidance of his father „from the cradle”. He began regular karate training in 1992, taking part in tournaments as a child. Currently, he is the holder of several hundred medals and awards won in various martial arts. 

Michael is one of the best spochan fighters in Europe.
Shihan Michał Piotrkowicz in yok-tobi-geri. Sparring at the sea side during Summer Karate Academy.
battodo demo during Matsuri 2019.
Expert of tameshigir (cutting).
Shihan Michael in fighting with yari.

Shihan Michał Piotrkowicz is World Karate Champion 2011, multiple winner of the World and European Cup in different karate federations, champion and vice-champion of the world in kobudo and sports chanbara (fight with soft weapons).

Multiple Polish champion in karate and spochan, Ukrainian champion in karate and kobudo, multiple winner of international competitions in tameshigiri (cutting mats with a sharp sword). Boxing instructor of the Polish Boxing Association, karate sports instructor, international chanbara sports instructor, MMA instructor, holder of master degrees in many Japanese martial arts: 6 dan karate, 6 dan battodo, 6 dan chanbara (kodachi and choken morote) , 5 dan kobudo, 4 dan ju-jutsu, 3 dan tanto-jutsu.

Perhaps the greatest tameshigiri expert in the world, belonging to the young generation of masters who has not yet turned 40 years old.