Hanshi Peter “Polander” Ciećwierz
9th Degree Black Belt
Shiro Washi No Te
International Okinawan Kempo Federation – President
Hanshi Peter Ciećwierz began his education in martial arts in Warsaw, Poland, where he was raised. During his youth, he studied at different schools. He was a member of the AZS-AWF Warsaw Judo Club from 1974 to 1980. At the same time, he was also practicing Shotokan Karate, Kyokushinkai and boxing. While in College at the Physical Education University in Warsaw, he began teaching others the basics of Karate as a self-employed instructor and continued the study of martial arts on his own. He also traveled extensively winning numerous international competitions.
In 1984, he moved to the United States where he continued his martial arts training under various professional martial artists, such as James Takemori (9th Degree Black Belt) the U.S. Judo Olympic Coach at that time; Joe Lewis, Bill Wallace, and Jeff Smith, all three are World Karate Champions; Professor Wally Jay, a Ju-Jitsu Master; and Frank Dux, the Kumite champion whose story was portrayed by Jean Claude Van Damme in the movie “Blood Sport”.
He also taught martial arts to others people during his period of training. From 1984 to 1985, he was an Instructor of the Martial Arts Team at Georgetown University in Washington, D.C., winning the Maryland State Olympics in Judo. From 1986 to 1988, he was the Martial Arts Instructor at the National Institute of Health in Maryland. He was also given the honor of being awarded the title of 3rd Degree Black Belt by Yukimitsu Kano, the President of the Kodokan Judo Institute in Tokyo, Japan.
In 1989 he met and began his training of the true classical life protection arts under Grand Master Taika Seiyu Oyata.
He also continued teaching. From 1988 to 1989 he was the Head Coach of the Judo Team at Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD. In 1990 and 1991, he went back to the National Institute of Health to continue as the Martial Arts Instructor. In 1993, he began teaching the system of RyuTe® Kempo Karate to both employees and students at the National Naval Medical Center in Maryland. From 1993 to 1994 he was an advisor in hand-to-hand combat survival skills for the Central Intelligence Agency and the Federal Bureau of Investigation employees.
In 1995, he was awarded by Grand Master Oyata the title of 5th Dan and a member of the Oyata Shin Shu Ho family art. In 2005 he tested and received the rank of 7th Degree Black Belt and the title of Kyoshi. He has accompanied Taika on several trips to Japan and Okinawa.
Since 1990 he has been teaching Okinawan Kempo Karate in his own dojo – “Polander Academy of Martial Arts” in Bethesda, MD.
Hanshi Polander never forgot his roots and in 2001 established the Polish Okinawan Kempo Federation, which is growing systematically with a staff of over 20 black belts, ranked 1st to 5th Dan (Degree Black Belts). In 2011 in response to growing interest the Polish Okinawan Kempo Federation the name changes to International Okinawan Kempo Federation and is working to expand into other European countries.
In 2016 Hanshi Polander established his own system Shiro Washi no Te (Hands of a White Eagle). The system incorporates Kyoshi’s lifetime experience in all fields of martial arts. That same year he was awarded the rank of 8th Dan by Hanshi Tetsuhiro Hokama. Hanshi Polander continues to teach worldwide.
In October 2018 Hanshi Polander co-hosted along with the Seidokan Federation a Seminar in Okinawa, Japan to honor the friendship of two great Masters: Sensei Shian Toma and Taika Seiyu Oyata. Over 20 black belts from Poland Czech Republic, Israel and USA represented the International Okinawan Kempo Federation in that event.
In August 2019 Peter Polander hosted one of the biggest Okinawan Karate Seminars in Europe with the guest of honor Hanshi Tetsuhiro Hokama. Over 150 martial artists representing 15 different counties participated in this spectacular event. Doctor Tetsuhiro Hokoma awarded Peter “Polander” Ciecwierz with the rank 9th degree black belt and the title of Hanshi, in recognition of his ongoing work promoting Okinawan Martial Arts worldwide.
Hanshi Peter Polander continues to visit Poland several times a year to teach and promote the art of Okinawan Kempo, he also continues teach in U.S. and worldwide.