ALL DOJO INSTRUCTORS HAVE BEEN SPECIFICALLY TRAINED BY LEO VIEIRA.
DOJO was founded by 5th degree black belt Master Leonardo Vieira, a pioneer JIU JITSU world champion as both a competitor and coach.
Our faculty has over FIFTY years of teaching experience.
Master Leo Vieira
Jiu Jitsu Black Belt - 5th Degree - Awarded in 1996
2-Time ADCC Champion - 2005, 2003
IBJJF black belt World Champion - 1999
IBJJF Pan American Champion - 2004, 2002
CBJJ Brazilian National Champion - 1998
ADCC 2nd Place - 2011, 2007
multiple-time ibjjf world championship medalist
Master Leo Vieira is the Founder and Program Director of DOJO. He is the visionary behind DOJO’s guiding principles, teaching philosophy, and youth-specific Jiu Jitsu curriculum.
Master Leo’s curriculum for youth is based on the foundational values of martial arts: respect, humility, balance, social growth, loyalty, and self-defense. He believes the lessons learned on the mat, including goal-setting, hard work, and dedication, transfer directly to school, other sports, and life outside the academy. The confidence gained from training can be seen in improved public-speaking skills. Communication skills can result in new friendships. And the problem-solving so inherent in Jiu Jitsu can lead to better academic performance. “I enjoy working with the kids because they learn so fast and you can see the positive changes every single day,” he explained.
Born in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, Master Leo studied Physical Therapy at UNIB - Universidade Ibirapuera and also played two years of professional soccer. He has trained Jiu Jitsu for over 30 years and held a black belt for over 20 of those years. He is now a 5th degree BJJ black belt and also holds a black belt in Judo. As a top-ranked Jiu Jitsu competitor for well over a decade he is recognized as one of the top 10 competitors in the history of the sport. As a coach, he founded Checkmat in 2008, one of the leading Jiu Jitsu competition teams in the world with affiliate schools in six continents. Master Leo sees both the art and science within Jiu Jitsu, emphasizing technical prowess and invention while also strongly believing in the dynamic expression and individuality of each practitioner. Because of his unique pedagogy, he is one of the most in-demand Jiu Jitsu teachers in the world and has taught seminars and workshops in countless countries all across the world.
Outside of Jiu Jitsu, Master Leo is an avid surfer and food enthusiast. On weekends, he can be found surfing and paddleboarding the jetty in Seal Beach or barbequing homemade picanha (a popular Brazilian steak) in his College Park backyard. Most of all, he enjoys spending time with his wife and two children.