Sensei (bw) BlackBackground

Sensei Brian Pena is a certified Blackbelt with 34 years of experience in Martial Arts and in the Health & Fitness industry. Sensei Pena has been teaching the art of Karate in the Columbia, South Carolina area since 1990 and has promoted 14 elite students of skill and character to the rank of 1st Degree Blackbelt or above. He has trained thousands of men, women, and children the art of Karate as well as having taught fitness classes and personal training at Gold’s Gym, Ladies Choice Fitness Center, and New Life Fitness Centers. Come in today and see what he can do for you!

Martial Arts Rank & Achievement

On Saturday – May 6, 2017 Sensei Brian Pena was awarded his 8th Degree Blackbelt (Hachidan) certification in Columbia, SC. This promotion was confirmed by Mr. Dave Adams, Mr. Michael Allison, Mr. Larry Bullard, Mr. Ron Cherry, Mr. Vic Coffin, Mr. Bill Daniels, Mr. Garry Dillingham, Mr. Lee Farmer, Mr. Mike Hess, Mr. Jerome Johnson, Ms. Maria Kimmey, Mr. Marty Knight, Mr. Joe Martin, Mr. Danny McCall, Ms. Germon Miller, Mr. Doug Perry, Mr. John Stover, and Mr. Ricky Taylor.  This promotion was later acknowledged on Thursday – February 8, 2018 in River Vale, NJ by Mr. Michael DePasquale Jr., the son of Sensei Brian Pena’s original instructor Mr. Michael DePasquale Sr. (RIP).

On Saturday – July 29, 2017 Sensei Brian Pena was declared and confirmed as the Headmaster of Zen Shotokai Karate and Kobudo by Ms. Maria Kimmey, wife of the late O’Sensei Virgil Kimmey, 10th Degree Blackbelt (Judan) who passed away May 22 in the year of our Lord 2002.  This proclamation was confirmed by Mr. Larry Bullard, Mr. Charles Burris, Mr. Sam Chapman, Mr. Bill Daniels, Mr. Mike Hess, Mr. Jerome Johnson, Mr. Marty Knight, Mr. Danny McCall, Mr. Jerry Piddington, Mr. Ricky Smith, Mr. Ricky Taylor, and Mr. James White.

On Saturday – July 28, 2018 Sensei Brian Pena was awarded the master teaching credential and honorific title of ‘Shihan’ in Columbia, SC.  This advancement was confirmed by Mr. Charles Burris, Mr. Sam Chapman, Mr. Bill Daniels, Mr. Garry Dillingham, Mr. Mike Hess, Mr. Larry Hodges, Mr. Jerome Johnson, Mr. Marty Knight, Mr. Joe Martin, Ms. Maria Kimmey, Mr. Rick Lee, Mr. Danny McCall, Mr. Lawrence McSwain, Mr. Billee Purvis, Mr. Lamar Sanders, Mr. Randy Smith, Mr. Ricky Smith, Mr. Corky Sikes, Mr. Rick Sparks, and Mr. Ricky Taylor.

“For you see though, it’s not the rank or title that matters, but who signs your certificate – these are people that believe in you, and I feel honored that these incredible men and women believe in me. Thank you to everyone that pushes me to work hard every day to improve myself and my students.” – Sensei Brian Pena

Major Tournament Grand Championship Wins

  • All Stars Championships (Acapulco, Mexico)
  • AmeriKick Nationals (Atlantic City, NJ)
  • Battle of Atlanta (Atlanta, GA)
  • Battle of Canada (Ontario, Canada)
  • Battle of Chicago (Chicago, IL)
  • Great Southeast (Spartanburg, SC)
  • Hurricane Nationals (Galveston, TX)
  • Jhoon Rhee Internationals (Washington, DC)
  • Side Kick Internationals (Washington, DC)
  • The Rumble (Raleigh, NC)
  • Upstate Open (Rochester, NY)
  • Yellow Rose Nationals (San Antonio, TX)
  • NBL Super Grands World Games
    • 1994 NBL Traditional Forms World Champion (Hollywood, CA)
    • 1999 NBL Traditional Weapons World Champion (Niagara Falls, Canada)

Other Martial Arts Accomplishments

  • Member of John Chung’s “Side Kick International Competition Team” (1997-1999)
  • Promoted the “Carolina Martial Arts Open” (2004 – present)
    • 2008 NBL / SKI Tournament of the Year
  • Founder of the “Legends of Carolina Martial Arts” (2017)