The Place


"Smart Defense" is where education, empowerment and physical self-defense come together

Posted at 1:24 PM, Nov 22, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-22 15:24:03-05

One out of every six American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime.

Statistics show that around half of attackers will stop if their victim simply shows that she is willing to fight back.

The Smart Defense training program was developed to give women and girls skills to protect themselves against assault using techniques from Jiu Jitsu, Muay Thai and Krav Maga.

There's an online version to connect with women and girls around the country.

Miyo Strong assisted in creating the Smart Defense Training program. She is an award-winning Jiu Jitsu World Master Champion.

She says it's important to emphasize the education surrounding sexual violence prevention, not just the martial arts techniques used for defense and escape.

The Elizabeth Smart Foundation (ESF) and the Malouf Foundation are partnering on the We Believe You campaign the month of November.

The program was launched in 2020 by ESF, the campaign aims to recognize the positive impact individuals can have on survivors of sexual violence simply by believing their stories.

The ESF team has put together a pledge that shows belief and support for survivors of sexual violence: "I pledge to stand with victims of sexual violence. I love you, I support you, and I believe you."

Individuals are encouraged to share the pledge or campaign information on social media with the hashtag #webelieveyou and to tag the @elizabethsmartfoundation, showing other social media users an ally in their network.

For anyone who takes the We Believe You pledge during the month of November, you will receive free one month access code to the online version of Strong Defense.

For an in-person class go to and click on Smart Defense. Classes are for ages 10 and up and typically have no more than 12 participants. There are locations in Salt Lake, Riverton and St. George.

For more information, or to make a donation, please visit or