Valley Self-DefenseValley Self-Defense



Trauma-informed care is an incredibly important and rapidly growing industry in the United States, especially after the pandemic. Industries are finding ways to help those who are hurting not just talk about their pain, but help them move through it.

With that in mind, what is trauma-informed self-defense?

At Valley Self-Defense, all of our instructors have been trained in trauma-informed care by a local trauma-informed educator. We understand that certain moves and techniques can sometimes be empowering and sometimes be traumatic, depending on where you are in your journey of healing. We want to give you confidence, but we don’t want to re-traumatize you - and that can be a fine line to walk.

Communication is key

When it comes to trauma, there can be no surprises. We will offer options that feel safe for you and eventually work up to getting you out of your comfort zone. But when we start, we want you to know that you have control in this situation.

We’ve been trained to recognize trauma triggers…

Sometimes it’s a look in a person’s eye or it can be a tremor in someone’s hand. Sometimes it’s the way someone responds to a question or the way we can see them moving away from a group or pulling inwards. But we can see when you are beginning to feel overwhelmed.

...and how to help you move through them

Using breathing techniques, 5-4-3-2-1, tapping, and talk, we can help bring you back to the present moment. We can help you bring yourself back to your body if you’re dissociating. We can discuss what works best to bring you back to calm.

We work to show you not what’s wrong with you, but what’s strong with you

More than anything, we want every person who steps on our mat to understand that there is no embarrassment in traumatic reactions. There is no shame. We understand the strength it took you to come to our gym.

You already have all the tools you need to defend yourself and to keep yourself safe - it’s our job to help you discover them.

Valley Self-Defense

A Team of Coaches that get results, consistently

Valley Self-Defense

Our community is what makes us special. And it's what will keep you going

You are welcome. No matter your age, your gender identity, your physical fitness your mobility, or what you've experienced - there is a place for you at Valley Self-Defense.

Our community is more than just our students, but also our neighbors. From holiday events to blood drives, movie nights to narcan training, from virtual happy hours to trunk or treat, our goal is to be more than just a gym, but a place where people can come together.

Every person shows up in different ways and we have options for learning, no matter your comfort level

Weekend Classes

Women Only Classes

LGBTQ+ Only Classes

Private Lessons

Located next to Stillwater Auto Clinic

Working out at the gym isn't easy. But getting there shouldn't be hard. Valley Self-Defense is located and and is easily accessible from 36 and 94 in Stillwater, Minnesota.

12430 55th Street, Oak Park Heights, MN 55082
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We're here to help you walk in peace. Empower yourself today!

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