Welcome to Our Shelton Butokukan Karate Club

The Shelton Butokukan Dojo has been in operation since 1971. We have classes for adults, children and even some for both parents and kids to train together. We offer a strong junior program, stressing confidence, focus and respect. With 17 active black belts, you’re sure to find someone who’s a good fit to help guide your martial arts learning experience.  We do NOT limit the number of classes you may attend. We do NOT have testing fees, contracts or any hidden costs.  We do NOT have an agenda or testing schedule for our students—this is YOUR experience.

As many of our instructors are current or past law enforcement officers, we understand and teach the laws as they apply to self-defense. Not only will you or your child learn how to defend yourselves, we also teach how to recognize, and avoid, dangerous situations. 

No matter your age, whether for fun, fitness, discipline or self-defense, you will find a unique setting here for you, your children and your whole family.  We welcome you to please come visit our Dojo. Watch a class, or better yet, throw on some sweats and get out on the floor and try out a class or two before you decide you are ready to join our family.

Our Mission

  • To provide martial arts training that encourages personal growth and development for each individual student at his or her own pace, emphasizing both physical and mental conditioning.
  • To uphold standards of excellence that inspire students to see beyond their current potential and reach new levels of personal success by setting goals and achieving them, building character, and improving confidence and self-esteem.
  • To instill traditional martial arts values of respect, discipline, honor, loyalty, family, and courage, building leadership skills and social accountability.
  • To provide an environment that supports each student on their martial arts journey toward discovering and claiming their own personal power from within and teaching the discipline and self-control to take responsibility for that power.


I wanted to take a moment to talk about our family’s experience with the Shelton Butokukan Karate Club.

In 2008 my son had a friend that was in a different style of martial arts in Olympia and he had visited that class and thought it was kinda fun, but my husband and I decided that if he was going to do martial arts that we wanted him to do a more “rounded” style that was not so focused on just kicking but using your whole body. The first place that came to mind was the Shelton Karate Club as my husband and I had both had friends in it at some point (the SKC had been around for a long time), so I made a call and took my son to sit in on a class-he immediately wanted in and his excitement that night then spread to my daughter who “visited” the next week. They both took to Sensei Kieth (Visser) and soon had bright new Gi’s and sparring gear and the rest is as they say history.

We often joke that if there was a cot in the back room Samantha would live at the Dojo! I cannot say enough about the school. We literally did not just join a club, but a family. In and out of the Dojo the instructors and other karateka are there for each other.

When my daughter had to have surgery for an injury (unrelated to Karate- lol) the other students and instructors were on the phone and texting for us for updates. It was funny because the nurses in surgery said that when Samantha was coming out of the anesthesia all she could talk about was the Dojo and Karate, and two days later when she finally got to get out and about the first place she went was the Dojo. She had to take over a year off to recover, but still made regular visits to cheer on her fellow Karateka during tests and sometimes just to visit, and when she finally started back every instructor made a point of ‘safety first’ so that she didn’t push herself too far and tailored workouts for her.

My husband and I also joined, so now it is a family activity. I guess the family that fights together stays together-haha. The kids like it that they both outrank us too!

From the moment you walk in the door you can feel that it is different from any other “school”– it feels more like a family gathering place. It does not have that “business” feel. The instructors donate their time and skills. I love how knowledge is passed down from the Sensei to the student and that the importance of what they are learning is re-enforced thru the Affirmations, while still making it fun for the kids, and adults too!

The Shelton Karate Club and the Butokukan system are truly gems and we are soooo lucky to have them!


Tina, Bert, Samantha and Jared Stevens

We LOVE our Shelton dojo! Since our son has been enrolled, we have always felt like we were a part of the karate "family". The events that the dojo puts on throughout the year are great for building those relationships, both for the kids and for us adults!

We have seen our son grow in his self confidence, his understanding of respect, and his social behavior as he has been a part of this family. He has had so much fun while learning the lessons that all kids need to learn as they grow into responsible adults. 

Whenever there has been something, such as a change in behavior or the need for encouragement that we felt needed to be addressed concerning our son, his sensei has been more than willing to work with him on the issue, and genuinely help him to succeed. All of the instructors, not just the individual student's sensei, are truly there for the students. And it shows in everything they do. The Shelton dojo and it's senseis are WONDERFUL!


The Sartori Family

My kids dragged me into the dojo for classes.  I knew little of martial arts, and I am not a fighting person by nature.  So I was completely taken by surprise at how interesting and fun karate is.  It is a good workout and a good way to release stress.  Similar to certain styles of yoga and other martial arts, you can trace some of the formal exercises back to the founders of the art.  It's pretty neat to learn those movements and know that they have been done over a century.  This is a not-for-profit organization.  I like the service-minded attitude of those who teach and run the dojo.  My kids have moved on, but I will stay at Butokukan to keep learning.  

Erica Marbet


2505 Olympic Hwy N. #160

Shelton, WA 98584

Mailing Address

P.O. Box 211

Phone Number

360 427 0374