The Heartland Dojo was established by Sensei Mike Oliveri in April of 2019.

Sensei Oliveri began his training at the Academy of Okinawan Karate in 2007 under Shihan Joseph Walker, a Shuri-ryu Chief Instructor. He taught for the Academy for four years, and was promoted to Sandan (3rd-degree black belt) in January, 2020. Sensei Oliveri also has over 18 years of experience in education, and he is currently the Technology Director for the Roanoke-Benson school district.

Sensei will be assisted by his sons, Patrick and Timothy. Patrick is currently an Ikkyu, or first-degree brown belt, and serves as the dojo’s dai senpai, or senior student. Both boys are passionate about their karate, and they enjoy working with others both on the mat or in service projects as members of the St Mary of Lourdes Youth Group.

Our philosophy is there’s a place for everyone in karate and in our dojo. We follow the principle of kaizen, or continuous improvement. Our goal is always forward, to be better today than we were yesterday. By following the way or path of karate, our goal is also to improve our character, not just our physical ability.

Each student is encouraged to progress at their own speed and to their own ability, so students of all ages, fitness levels, and athletic ability are encouraged to participate. One is never too old or out of shape to get started, and children who are often frustrated by team sports find success in martial arts training.

The Shury-ryu Dojo Kun
A dojo is a school, and the dojo kun is the school’s creed or pledge. The Shuri-ryu Dojo Kun is as follows:

I shall conduct myself in a manner which will reflect credit upon myself and society.

I shall be loyal to my school and to the art it teaches.

I shall be honest and exercise integrity with the purpose of developing cooperation and trust with my fellow karateka and my teachers.

I shall exercise restraint in the use of my karate knowledge, employing it only in a fair competition and in defense of my life, my family, and my country.