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Master Brian & Professor Lee Lowery

Grandmaster Brian Zawilinski

Personal student of Modern Arnis Grandmaster Remy Amador Presas the “Professor” from 1982 until he passed away on 8/28/01. There are less than a handful of people worldwide that started training with GM Presas in the early 1980’s and remain active to this day. Brian was awarded the title of "Master of Tapi Tapi" in October, 2000 and was granted worldwide ambassador status in Modern Arnis.

In 2021, Brian was recognized for his decades of work and accomplishments in preserving the art of Modern Arnis by GM Roberto Presas with the coveted rank of Lakan Sampu (10th Degree Black Belt). 

Personal student of Professor Lee Lowery (Kenpo Karate) for over 20 years starting in 1981.

Awarded the title of “Senior Professor” in Kenpo Karate by the New England Martial Arts Teachers Association (NEMATA).

Brian’s efforts and his system of TAWA were recently recognized as its own system by the elite World Head of Family Sokeship Council.

Master of Tapi Tapi – (“Tapi Tapi”- a phrase coined by GM Presas that means counter for counter) a title separate from and above rank, awarded by GM Presas only to those individuals having achieved the highest level of proficiency in Modern Arnis. There are only 7 people worldwide that have received this title from GM Remy Amador Presas.

In addition to his training under his primary Instructors, for over a quarter century, Brian has continuously expanded his studies by attending seminars taught by Grandmaster Wally Jay (Small Circle Jujitsu), Grandmaster Ed Parker (American Kenpo Karate), Senior Depasquale (Jujitsu), Sifu Richard Roy (Yang style Tai Chi, Qigong, Bagua Palm), Grandmaster Ron Van Browning (mixed martial arts), Chen style Taiji Master Zhang Zhaoxun as well as numerous world champions.

Brian continues to teach private lessons, local classes and seminars in central, CT, as well as continuing to travel and teach wherever the arts take him.


Roberto Presas, Cristino Vazquez, Brian and Theresita Presas
Hinigaran, July 2006

Ambassador of Modern Arnis

For the past 16 years, Brian has traveled, taught seminars, camps, conducted workshops, and given exhibitions throughout the United States, Puerto Rico, Canada, Germany, and Southeast Asia. He continues to uphold the wishes of the “Professor” by spreading the martial arts and serving as a worldwide ambassador of Modern Arnis and FMA. Brian has written numerous articles and assisted fellow martial artists in writing articles for numerous martial arts publications and books..

Rank, title, status, fame, fortune, and politics are of no concern to Brian. The chances of anyone seeing him actually wearing a belt are quite slim. For those that train with him, he prefers to be called “Brian.” Regardless of skill or longevity, if you are genuinely interested in learning the martial arts, then you will quickly realize that you have a lot in common with Brian as he shares his passion, experience and knowledge of the arts with you.

Brian often gives public praise and thanks for the opportunity to have been one of Professor Presas’ personal students for nearly 20 years. Another cornerstone in Brian’s training is his original instructor, Professor Lee Lowery (retired), who started training Brian at the young age of 13...

There are literally only a handful of people in the world that started their training under the Professor in the early eighties and remain active to this day. Brian is enjoying an incredible journey in the arts as he continues to travel, teach, learn, make “connections” and most importantly “give back” through the arts all over the world...

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