7 self-defense classes in Birmingham that will make you safer and stronger!

Agoge fitness
Agoge Fitness offers a self-defense class specifically for women, but also other options such as martial arts. Photo via agogefit.com.

Self-defense classes not only teach you the methods to escape a potentially dangerous situation, but they also aid in honing your awareness skills. Whether you want to take a class as a family, one-on-one or with only women, Birmingham has plenty of options to choose from.

1. Covenant Rescue Group Women’s Self-Defense Class

Covenant Rescue Group Women’s Self Defense Class
Covenant Rescue Group is committed to stopping human trafficking by aiding other organizations dedicated to the cause. Photo via absfly.com.

This Saturday, January 18, Covenant Rescue is offering a FREE Women’s self-defense class. Covenant Rescue Group provides resources and support to organizations that are fighting against human trafficking.

  • When: Saturday, January 18 from 5:30PM-6:30PM
  • Where: Gardendale Civic Center, 857 Main Street Gardendale, AL 35071
  • Register for FREE
  • Contact: Facebook | Website

2.Vindication Krav Maga LLC

Krav Maga
The size of a person doesn’t matter in Krav Maga, it’s more focused on fast quick movements as a means of self-defense. Photo via Pinterest.

Would you expect a place with a name like this to have anything less than 5-star reviews? Vindication offers Civilian Krav Maga classes from trained IKMF instructor Matthew Holder.


“Y’all need to get to this class! It is so empowering and you work your tail off. I feel stronger and more capable of taking care of myself. Highly recommend!!”

Lauren Rae Brown via Facebook review
  • When: Monday and Thursday 7PM–8PM
  • Where: 3020 4th Ave S Birmingham AL, 35233
  • Price: 1st month $60 (50% off the first month) | $100 /mo |15% Off families of three or more
  • Contact: Website | 205.480.4398

3. Situational Awareness and Basic Self-Defense Class by the Mountain Brook Police Department

Learn from law enforcement themselves this February! Five officers from the Mountain Brook Police Department will host a self-defense class at the station.

This class is intended for Mountain Brook residents, business owners and their employees first. However, others may be included depending on space.

  • When: Monday, February 3 through Wednesday, February 5 from 6:30PM-8:30PM
  • Where: Terry Oden Police and Fire Training Facility, 3611 East St Mountain Brook, AL 35243
  • Price: FREE
  • Contact: Email Officer Shari Williams to sign up | 205.879.0486

4. Anestea Services

Anestea Services self-defense class
Train one-on-one or with a group of women at Anestea Services. Photo via Anestea Services’ Facebook.

If you’re looking specifically for women’s self-defense, taught by a woman, Anestea Services is located within Samuel Puccio Brazilian jiu-jitsu. Group and private classes are available, taught by an experienced black belt.


5.Gracie Jui-Jitsu of Birmingham

Grace Jui-Jitsu of Birmingham self-defense class
Did you know in addition to self-defense Gracie Jui-Jitsu also offers a Youth Bully Proof class for your children? Photo via Gracie Jiu-Jitsu of Birmingham’s Facebook.

If you’ve listened to literally any podcast within the past year, you’ve probably heard a surge of support for jiu-jitsu.

In addition to being a great method of self-defense, it also aids in skills like patience and anger-management. AKA, all the ones you need when driving home in Birmingham traffic.

  • When: Monday-Thursday 4:30PM-8PM, Saturday 10AM-11:50AM, Friday by appointment only
  • Where: 3244 Cahaba Heights Road Vestavia Hills, AL, 35243
  • Price: Email for more info
  • Contact: Website | 205.540.1287

6. Women’s Self-Defense Class at Agoge Fitness

Agoge fitness class
Agoge’s women self-defense class isn’t a martial arts class, it’s geared toward teaching you natural self-defense practices. Photo via agogefit.com

Agoge offers a 5-week course to women exclusively designed to teach skills like escaping harmful situations and preventing sexual assault. Rather than teaching basic martial arts, it trains you for specific experiences.


“You have the right to your own personal autonomy. Our Women’s Self Defense Course helps ensure you keep that autonomy.”

Agoge Fitness via its website
  • When: Tuesday and Thursday at 5:30PM
  • Where: 3020 4th Ave S, Birmingham, AL 35233, inside the back of Lakeview Personal Fitness
  • Price: Email for more information about pricing
  • Contact: Website | 205.706.3295

7. UAB’s R.A.D program offers women’s self-defense classes.

UAB R.A.D. flyer
Once you graduate from R.A.D. you can practice it anywhere in the country that it’s offered. Photo via uab.edu.

If you’re a female UAB student or employee, you can register for R.A.D, the Rape Aggression Defense program. R.A.D. is a twelve-hour course, which is broken up into three, four-hour sessions offered during the evenings, or two, six-hour sessions offered on weekends. 

It’s a nationally recognized program developed in Virginia by Larry Nadeau and taught across the country at schools and organizations.

  • When: March 9-11,23-25 | June 8-10, 22-24 5:30PM-9:30PM
  • Where: UABPD Room 208
  • Register for FREE
  • Contact: Website

Have you taken a self-defense class before? Share your experience on social @bhamnow!