From piano to martial arts. “I found that sports would give me more than music”
Patrycja Adamkiewicz began her sports career quite by accident. For several years her daily routine was to combine training with piano lessons. Now the most important sports successes on her account include a silver medal at the European Taekwondo Championships. This year, the chance to win more rings will be the European Games, held in Poland.
You spent the turn of the year in a very special place – the United States. Was there time to create a small list of New Year’s resolutions?
– Yes, I’m the kind of person who likes to make such resolutions. Every year I always set myself goals for the next year on New Year’s Eve and write them all out on the calendar. These are not only sports goals, but also personal goals, but you know sports ones are more. Later in the year I try to make efforts to achieve them.
So what will be the main sports goals for this year for you?
– They will be the Senior World Championships, which will be held in May in Baku. Later, the European Games and the Summer Universiade. These are the main sports events for which I am preparing the highest form. In addition to this, I still have the World Cup series and the Grand Prix awaiting me, but these three previously mentioned tournaments will be the most important.
Travel is an inseparable part of sports, and you have already visited many countries through training camps and various competitions. Is there one that has won your heart the most?
– This is a difficult question, because I really enjoy discovering new countries and new people, and learning about new styles of athletes from different countries. This year I was at a training camp in Brazil and I think it was one of the best camps I’ve been to. I spent three weeks there and I feel I will get a lot out of that time. It was my first trip to Brazil, so I brought back a lot of positive memories. I also recently returned from a camp from Jordan. I really enjoy traveling and benefiting from such training, as it gives a greater perspective on other fighting styles.
Would you be able to estimate how many days a year you spend on the road, on trips and how many at home, and perhaps more so in Warsaw itself, where you currently live?
– There are a lot of trips. I can say that it will be about 200 days for sure when I am away. On a daily basis I live in Warsaw in a dormitory, where I train and study. I am at home very rarely, as I come from Jarocin, so I go back there when I can. Most often it’s holidays, although we also often have groupings at Easter, so it can be hard. I try to return home in every spare moment, because family is important to me.
It can be said that you started your career as a professional athlete by accident.
– Exactly! My career started very accidentally, because my mother saw a poster promoting the sport and said that I must also do some sports. At the same time I was also taking piano lessons. If another sport had opened in this locality it is possible that I would have coached something else.
For a long time you had to combine music and sports. Was it a difficult moment for you when you had to choose only one thing?
– I combined music and sports for six years. There were times when I would go straight from training to piano lessons. This was not difficult for me. I was helped a lot by my parents to get everything together. At that time I also had fewer trainings than I do now, four times a week, and piano lessons were interspersed. Eventually there came a time when I had to decide whether to go into music or sports, because I couldn’t combine the two forever. After graduating from the music academy, I won the European Cadet Championship in Taekwondo and found that sports would give me more than music. Later, I continued to play myself various pieces at home.
You mentioned that in your early days you trained four times a week, and now how often do you train?
– Except for Sunday, I train every day. Sometimes I have two workouts a day, and sometimes only one. The total would be about ten/eleven workouts a week.
From your perspective, there is still a stereotype in society that combat sports are not very feminine sports, or is it completely normal now?
– Now I rarely encounter such an opinion. In my club in Jarocin there were more girls than guys and when some new boy came to us he maybe trained for a month and all the girls beat him, so he just gave up. It was always the case that in our club there were only girls. At first in Warsaw it was a bit the other way around, but now it’s evenly matched. We often do training together, because you can get a lot out of it, and now it’s normal.
You finished 9th at the 2022 Senior World Championships. Did you feel a little unsatisfied?
– Even a big unsatisfaction. I always set high goals for myself and for this championship I also set such a goal. Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to fully realize it, so I still feel a big insufficiency. I will do everything to make this year this position better.
But from the European Senior Championships you brought back a silver medal – although the preparations themselves were not the easiest.
– This is my greatest achievement in my sports career. This was the first start after the injury. I was unable to participate in competitions for two months. It was also a stressful situation for me, but everything went my way. I won a silver medal. In the semifinals I beat a two-time Olympic champion, so it’s double joy.
Why is it worth coming to Taekwondo during the European Games, how would you encourage fans?
– In Poland we have few starts when it comes to Taekwondo – I only compete once a year, when we have the Polish championships. If there is such an opportunity to come, to see athletes not only from our country, but also from other countries, and Europe stands at a very high level, then I encourage all the more. Maybe also it will be possible to persuade young people to try their hand at this sport, as it is little appreciated in Poland.