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Defend Yourself. We can help.

Self-Defense Classes


The UConn Police Department in partnership Off-Campus Student Services, Residential Life, The Department of Allied Health Services and the Hawley Armory have teamed up to offer self-defense programming for both women and men on campus. Our programs are offered throughout the academic year for students and during the summer and winter intercessions for staff and faculty. These programs are offered for free on campus. Classes full up quickly so check our webpage at http://publicsafety.uconn.edu/self-defense for sign-up dates and online enrollment. Seats are offered on a first-come/first-served basis. Specialized and private classes are available for a fee. Email PDStartTeam@uconn.edu for inquiries.

The Resisting Aggression with Defense (R.A.D.) Basic Personal Defense System is a national program of realistic self-defense tactics and techniques network dedicated self-defense instructors that has been established by nationally certified R.A.D. Instructors since 1989.

These programs train both men and women in basic self-defense techniques and offers viable options when confronted with various threats of violence and aggression.

The R.A.D. system is not a martial arts class. All courses are taught by nationally certified R.A.D. instructors from the UConn Police and Fire Departments.


Women’s Self Defense Classes

The 14 hour course (12 hours for Faculty/Staff), usually broken down into 3 and 4 hour blocks, educates women about defensive strategies using simple and effective tactics and a unique teaching methodology. This comprehensive course progresses from awareness, prevention, risk reduction, and avoidance to basic self-defense participation. The course includes an illustrated and easily read student manual that outlines the entire physical self-defense program. The student class features guest speakers from our on-campus and local partners.

This course is offered throughout the year and general sessions are announced on our website and through the UConn Daily Digest. We also can work to schedule a special program for your group. Please note that any self-defense class requires practice time and physical exertion. The Police Department cannot offer self-defense classes of fewer hours than listed. If you would like general safety programming, please visit our Education and Crime Prevention Page for more information.

“This is a great service to provide! It was a lot fun, the instructors where great-not only educated you correctly but had fun while doing it!!! Great job!!!”

“I really appreciate the opportunity to participate in this class free of charge and feel more comfortable with UConn PD. It was definitely outside of my comfort zone but I’m glad I did it.”

“I am glad this class was offered. I enjoyed getting to meet UConn police officers.”

“This was an amazing experience. I feel so empowered as a woman and greatly appreciate the skills that I have gained here.”

“I feel much more confident that I could defend myself if attacked. I think all women should take this training.”

“It was a great class for the UConn Community!”

“Excellent course. Can’t wait to practice more!”


Women’s Self-Defense for STUDENTS

This class is limited to students at the University of Connecticut. All student classes will be taught in Shippee Hall’s Pequot Room on the Storrs Campus. Online enrollment for these classes will be open several weeks prior to the start of each session. Participants must be able to attend the first three classes in order to have a seat in the class and to participate in the 4th class, where students are offered simulated scenarios.

Fall Class Dates:
Monday, October 02, 2017 5:30 – 8:30pm
Monday, October 09, 2017 5:30 – 8:30pm
Monday, October 16, 2017 5:30 – 8:30pm
Monday, October 23, 2017 5:30 – 8:30pm

Fall Class Sign-up Request Form

Sorry. Enrollment for this class is full. Please check back regularly.

Spring 2018 Class Dates:
Wednesday, February 14, 2018 5:30 – 8:30pm
Wednesday, February 21, 2018 5:30 – 8:30pm
Wednesday, February 28, 2018 5:30 – 8:30pm
Wednesday, March 7, 2018 5:30 – 8:30pm

Spring Class Sign-up Request Form

Women's Self-Defense Class Registration form will be available starting 8 AM on January 30 2018.


Women’s Self-Defense for Faculty/Staff

This class is offered to faculty/staff at the University of Connecticut. The class will be taught in Hawley Armory on the Storrs Campus on Wednesday nights starting December 20. Online enrollment for this class will be open from December 1st – December 19th, 2017 (or until the class is filled). Participants must be able to attend the first three classes in order to participate in the 4th class, where students are offered simulated scenarios.

Winter Break Class Dates:
Wednesday, December 20, 2017 5:30 – 8:30pm
Wednesday, December 27, 2017 5:30 – 8:30pm
Wednesday, January 03, 2018 5:30 – 8:30pm
Wednesday, January 10, 2018 5:30 – 8:30pm

Winter Break Class Sign-up Request Form

Women's Self-Defense Class Registration form will be available starting 8 AM on December 01 2017.

The goal of this 12 hour course (4 classes) is to provide realistic self-defense options to men regardless of their physical conditioning. Students at all levels of ability, age, experience, and strength will be provided with techniques and information that can be effectively used from the first day of class. R.A.D. for men stands for Resisting Aggression with Defense and is designed to empower men to make different decisions when confronted with aggressive behavior.

This class is open to students, staff, and faculty at the University of Connecticut. The class will be taught in Shippee Hall’s Pequot Room on the Storrs Campus on Wednesday nights starting March 28th. Online enrollment for this class will be open from March 15 through March 27, 2018. Participants must be able to attend all 4 Wednesday evening classes to be eligible for a seat in this class.

Spring 2018 Class Dates:

Wednesday, March 28, 2018 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Wednesday, April 04, 2018 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Wednesday, April 11, 2018 5:30pm – 8:30pm
Wednesday, April 18, 2018 5:30pm – 8:30pm

Sign-up Request Form

Men's Self-Defense Class Registration form will be available starting 8 AM on March 15 2018.

If you have questions or inquiries about our self-defense program, or to schedule a demonstration of the Women’s Self-Defense program, email PDStartTeam@uconn.edu