Channel your inner karate kid or krav maga maven in self-defense classes.
Fitness routine lagging? Don’t tap out yet. Self-defense classes help you protect yourself from potential threats and get a full-body workout. These Valley studios offer classes at all experience levels to get you kicking butt while kicking calories.
Don’t Be A Victim! City of Phoenix Self-Defense Class
Jui Chiu, a former police officer and Army specialist, teaches free self-defense classes at Phoenix Public Library branches from March to December. Chiu shows participants how to be more aware and how to defend themselves with everyday objects. To reach the most people possible, he adapts his self-defense techniques for wheelchair users in special sessions held three times a year, and the class is taught in Spanish three times a year.
EVKM Self Defense & Fitness
Learn how to respond to physical threats at the drop of a hat from instructors with years of experience in krav maga, a system of martial arts developed for the Israel Defense Forces. Because every citizen of Israel must join the IDF, soldiers of all sizes and abilities are taught to defend themselves using their strengths – and their opponents’ weaknesses – to their advantage. In this East Valley studio, situational awareness, knee-jerk reactions and disarming are the focus. Inquire for pricing; first class is free.
1332 E. Apache Blvd., Tempe, 480-535-7087, evkmselfdefense.com
React Defense Systems
Rather than focusing on the “art” in martial arts, Tactical Black programs at React Defense Systems focus on education in the principles of hand-to-hand combat. The program emphasizes defense in more extreme situations, like an active shooter scenario, and verbal de-escalation skills. Lead instructor Jay Ackerman spent more than 18 years developing the program and has been teaching TB in the Valley since 2001. Monthly classes for civilians with no prior training start at $169 per month.
Locations in Phoenix, Glendale and Chandler, reactdefense.com
Gracie Jiu-Jitsu Phoenix
In addition to jiu-jitsu and grappling classes, Gracie offers a 10-session program geared toward empowering women to protect themselves in the cases of common attacks, like having their hair pulled from behind. No prior experience is necessary. During each one-hour session, participants learn two defense techniques. Once the program is complete, participants can test for a ceremonial pink belt. Newcomers may participate in a 10-day free trial (two classes per week for five weeks); after the trial, classes start at $80 a month for four classes or $160 a month for eight classes.
13637 N. Tatum Blvd., Phoenix, 480-339-9019, graciejiujitsuphoenix.com