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Put Empowerment Self-Defense to work in your community by becoming an Empowerment Self - Defense Instructor.

Women's Level 1 Empowerment Self - Defense (ESD) Instructor Training is a unique week-long intensive program for female-identified self-defense instructors, both aspiring and experienced, who want to develop their skills to deliver ESD training in their communities. Graduates of the training are qualified to provide a 10-hour ESD course to adults, as well as shorter formats.


Co-Ed Level 1 Empowerment Self - Defense Instructor Training is a week-long intensive program for adults, with preference given to co-ed teaching pairs who will co-teach in their communities. This training prepares Instructors to teach ESD violence prevention programs for co-ed children's groups ages 5-7 years and 8-10 years.

All Level 1 ESD Instructors will continue to develop their skills through online seminars, one to one mentoring, and by teaching ESD in their community.

Senior Instructor Women's Course is a week-long intensive program for female-identified ESD instructors that prepares them to teach an ESD Global Level 1 Women's Instructor Training. Pre-requisites for all candidates are: 350 hours of ESD or other equivalent holistic self-defense teaching experience, ESD Certification (NWMAF or equivalent) and completion of the ESD Assessment Survey with an interview.

Scholarships are available

Level 1 Training cost without room $2,000 USD


Level 1 Training cost with room is $2,500 USD

Learn more about about our upcoming conference:

Violence Prevention Education

Conference 2020

"...holistic, empowerment-based self-defense classes are highly effective in both preventing violence and empowering, without blaming victims, limiting women's lives, or perpetuating harmful stereotypes about women."  - Dr. Jocelyn Hollander, University of Oregon

What makes Empowerment Self - Defense effective?

Empowerment Self-Defense is the only violence prevention education tool proven to reduce the incidence of abuse by integrating a program that teaches:

  • How to recognize abuse, coercion and boundary violations

  • How to communicate assertively and advocate for oneself under stress.

  • How to physically protect yourself from violence perpetrated by strangers and familiar people.