Michal Martikan Bio: Canoeing & Net Worth

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Michal Martikan is a slalom canoeist from Slovakia who has competed internationally since 1994.

In 1996, Michal became the first Slovakian athlete to win an Olympic gold medal after 1993 independence. 

Likewise, Michal has the most Olympic medals of any slalom paddler, with two golds, two silvers, and one bronze.

The slalom canoeist also holds four World Championship titles in the C1 individual category.

Michal Martikan
Michal Martikan (Source: Instagram)

Today we are here with all the information you need about Michal Martikan. So, please stick with us until the end and learn about this fearless Slovak Kayaker.

But before that, let’s sneak peek at some quick facts about Michal. 

Quick Facts

Full Name Michal Martikan
Birth Date May 18, 1979
Birth Place Liptocsky Mikulas, Czechslovakia
Nickname Michal
Nationality Slovak
Ethnicity Not Available
Hobbies Ice Hockey, Golf, Ski mountaineering, Windsurfing
Food Habit Non-vegetarian 
Education Not Available
Zodiac Sign Taurus
Favorite Food “bryndzove halusky”, sushi
Hero/Idol British paddler Richard Fox
Senior International Debut Location Nottingham, UK
Senior International Debut Competition World Cup
Senior International Debut Year 1994
Club Kanoe Tatra Klub Dukla Liptovsky Mikulas
Father’s Name Jozef Martikan
Mother’s Name Katarina Martikanova
Siblings Not Available
Age 44 years old
Height 5 feet 7 inches (170 cm)
Reach Not Available
Weight 159 lb (72 kg)
Eye Color Blue
Hair Color Brown
Profession Professional Canoeist
Coach Jozef Martikan
Marital Status Married
Wife Lenka Martikanova 
Active Years Not Available
Children Not Available
Salary Under Review
Net Worth $1 million – $5 million 
Social Media FacebookInstagram
Merch Wooden Paddle
Last Update February 2024

Michal Martikan: Personal Life

On May 18, 1979, Michal was born in Liptocsky Mikulas, Czechslovakia. In northern Slovakia, it is a small town located on the Váh River, approximately 285 kilometers north of Bratislava.

Moreover, the town is in the Liptov area, near the Low Tatra and Tatra mountains, in the Liptov Basin.  

His mother’s name is Katarina Martikanova. Likewise, his Father’s name is Jozef Martikan. However, any information about Michal’s sibling is currently unavailable. 

Michal Martikan: Career


Michal Martikán, at the age of 16, became the youngest champion of a World Cup slalom canoeing event.

With nothing to lose on the second run, Michal went all out and beat off defending champion Czech Republican Luká Pollert.

Moreover, he finished sixth in the canoe slalom singles event at the 1996 Olympics three months later, at 17.

Michal was the first independent Slovakian to win an Olympic medal.

Further, he went into the 2000 Olympics as the overwhelming favorite, having routinely placed at the top of every major competition and World Cup series.

Likewise, Michal had the most incredible qualifying score in the Sydney Games. However, he was only in the fifth position after the first run of the final.

Michal also paddled a faultless route in the second run; his time was the quickest of the round.

Moreover, he could climb up to second place behind France’s Tony Estanguet for the silver medal.

In 2004, Michael competed in his third Olympics and dominated the qualifying round. Likewise, he also finished first in the semi-finals, serving as the final’s first run.

Further, at the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Michal recovered his Olympic title. He also won bronze at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London.

Moreover, From 1996 to 2012, the Slovak canoeist became the first slalom canoeist to conquer five Olympic medals, one in each of the five games.

Also, Read: David Florence’s Bio: Paddling & Net Worth>>

World Championship

Between 1995 and 2010, Michal maintained an unbroken streak of medals at the World Championships in the individual C1 event.

Michal finished outside the medals in an Olympic or World Championship individual event at the 2011 ICF Canoe Slalom World Championships for the first time in his career.

Furthermore, his failure occurred, ironically, in front of a home crowd on the Cunovo course near Bratislava.

However, Michal extended his medal streak by winning gold in the team event with his Slovak colleagues.

Between 2013 and 2019, the Slovak athlete gathered six more gold medals in the C1 team event, making it 17 World Championships consecutively with an award.

European Championship

Between 2007 and 2010, Michal won four consecutive individual golds at the European Championships. 

Moreover, Slovakia won the C1 team event 11 times with him on the squad.

Water slalom skiers Alexander Slafkovský, Matej Beňuš and Michal Martikán became European champions in the 3xC1 team competition!
Water slalom skiers Alexander Slafkovský, Matej Beňuš, and Michal Martikán became European champions in the 3xC1 team competition (Source: Instagram)

Michal also owns six silver medals (4 individual and two team events) and two bronze medals (1 in the team and 1 in the particular event).

You might be interested in Brad Ludden’s Bio: Kayaking & Net Worth>>

Michal Martikan: Recognitions

Michal was named the Slovak Canoe Association whitewater Athlete of the Year eight times between 2003 and 2014.

Moreover, he was also inducted into the Whitewater Hall of Fame in Bretton Woods, NH, in the United States of America, in 2010. 

Further, Michal was honored as the Slovakian Athlete of the Year four times in 1996, 1997, 2007, and 2008.

Manslaughter Conviction

Martikan was involved in an automobile accident in Velké Záluie, Slovakia, in November 1997. 

The vehicle he was driving collided with and killed a pedestrian. According to the inquiry, Michal was speeding far faster than the 40 km/h speed limit.

Likewise, the dead guy was also discovered to be heavily drunk at the time of the accident, which occurred in the dark outside of a populated location.

Martikan was on the verge of being imprisoned for breaking his probation terms. However, despite widespread criticisms, Michael was given a presidential pardon by then-President Rudolf Schuster.

Aside from keeping him out of jail, the president also essentially cleared his name of the conviction.

According to Rudolf Schuster, Martikan’s favorable sporting image of the country abroad merited the pardon.

However, critics cited a double standard and Michal’s privileged treatment due to his status as a sports celebrity.

Michal Martikan: Body Measurements 

The Slovak Canoer, Michal Martikan, was born in the year 1979. So, he is currently 44 years old.

Michal does not have any tattoos on his body. Additionally, Michal also has a very charming personality.

Further, Michal’s zodiac is Leo. Sapiens with the air sign Taurus are realistic, reliable, and responsible. They are also mature and adventurous. Michal Martikan is no different.

Talking about Michal’s physique, he has a strong body and an athletic build. Moreover, Michal has a height of 5 feet 7 inches. He weighs about 72 kg.

The Slovak canoer keeps his body fit with healthy nutrition. Moreover, he also goes to the gym and exercises daily.

Likewise, Michal also spends time training, kayaking, mountaineering, and Windsurfing.  Therefore, we can say that Michal is quite an adventurous person by nature. 

Social Media Presence

The canoeist is available on Social Media on Facebook and Instagram. You can find Michal on Facebook as Michal Martikan OLY. His Facebook page has 3.2k followers.

Likewise, Michal is present on Instagram as @michalmartikan. He has nearly 3k followers on Instagram.

Michal Martikan at the 72nd International Tatra Slalom 2020
Michal Martikan at the 72nd International Tatra Slalom 2020 (Source: Instagram)

The slalom canoeist does not have his own YouTube Channel. However, many of his videos are uploaded on the official page of the Olympics. 

Also, learn about the Circumnavigator, Freya Hoffmeister>>

Michal Martikan: Net Worth

The Slovak canoeist has amassed enough through his canoeing career. Apart from his earnings from canoeing, Michal also accumulated wealth from his work as a coach.

After failing to qualify for Tokyo, the Slovak canoeist accepted an opportunity to train canoeist Nadine Weratschnigová.

Moreover, Michal also worked as a coach for Austria’s Olympic squad. Further, Michal also earns from doing various sponsorships and endorsements. 

The amount of wealth, assets, and salary earnings of the Slovak canoeist are currently under review. However, his net worth is around $1-$5 million. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Does Michal Martikan have any sporting relatives?

Yes, just like Michal, his Father is also a slalom athlete. Michal’s Father used to compete in slalom canoeing. Moreover, Michal’s Father is also his coach and the most influential person in his life. 
Michal lives by the motto that losses also need to be celebrated, just like victories. He believes that wins are undoubtedly outstanding. However, losses give much more motivation.
According to Michal, you cannot win in life and anything without analyzing your losses and mistakes.

What is Michal’s favorite paddling course?

Michal loves paddling almost everywhere. However, if he chose his favorite paddling course, it is undoubtedly the Athens canoe slalom course.

Aayusha Bhattarai

Aayusha Bhattarai is a dedicated writer with a passion for uncovering the fascinating stories behind athletes' lives. With a keen eye for detail and a knack for storytelling, she brings readers on a journey through the triumphs, struggles, and inspirations of their favorite players.


Athlete Profiles Net Worth


  • Aayusha explores the off-field lives of athletes, from their hobbies and interests to their family dynamics.
  • She keeps readers informed with the latest news and developments in the world of sports.


Aayusha's passion for sports journalism stems from her love of both writing and athletics. With a background in journalism and a keen interest in sports, she combines her talents to deliver compelling stories that resonate with readers.

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