Defend Yourself works to empower people
— especially women and LGBTQ people — to end violence and create a world where they can be fully themselves.
In our classes you’ll learn skills to help you prevent, interrupt, heal from, and end violence and abuse. You’ll leave better equipped to deal with everything from bothersome people to full-on attacks.
Getting Ready for College: Saturday, August 5, 1-4 p.m., Potomac Massage Training Institute, one block from Silver Spring Metro.
For Muslim Women + More: Friday, September 29, 6-9 p.m., Vienna, Va.
What can we do for you?
Join a class that Defend Yourself has set up, or create one just for your group! Or take our Safe Bars program, Defend Yourself’s bystander intervention program for bar, club, and restaurant staffs. Or just one click and you can learn something now!
I feel so much stronger and more confident. Now I feel good about saying no to something I don’t want, where I used to feel bad about it. This is a big change!
To my surprise, I found the verbal parts of the class the most beneficial. Instead of just preparing us for the chance of an all-out attack, we learned skills that have been helping me to navigate more assertively through everyday situations. You helped all of us to view self-defense holistically, and asked us to question our role in making this world less violent.
This class was a springboard. Now I know where I need to go in the rest of my life.
The teachers are nonjudgmental: they are not going to tell you that what you are doing is wrong.
This class exceeded my expectations! I looked forward to class and the chance to practice my skills. I enjoyed the supportive environment and the space to develop strategies for confronting harassment.
Thank you for a wonderful class. I will spread the word around my high school and to every interested girl/woman I know!
This class has affected my life in many ways. I am now able to deal with many suppressed feelings. This is an opening for me. I finally allow myself to feel anger without blaming myself. I now realize I have the right to happiness and I will fervently fight whoever tries to take this.
This class showed me that . . . I have every right to defend myself and take care of myself the best way I know how. My first responsibility is to myself.
When I took my [previous self-defense] class, I learned how to fend off physical attacks, but it took me much, much longer to learn how to develop and maintain healthy relationships. I spent too many years in an abusive relationship . . . Now I’m a lot more careful about defending myself – which is why your class was so important to me.
I feel more confident and like I can get through anything.