Ignite Your Power

What could you do if you didn’t allow fear to hold you back? 


Empowerment Self Defense Meets Health Coaching

Empowerment Self Defense (ESD) is a comprehensive approach to personal safety and self-defense that focuses on empowering individuals with the knowledge, skills, and strategies to protect themselves and enhance their personal well-being. Unlike traditional self-defense programs that primarily focus on physical techniques, ESD incorporates a broader range of elements that address the emotional and psychological aspects of self-defense, as well as the physical. ESD programs typically include a combination of physical techniques, assertiveness training, boundary setting, verbal skills, awareness training, and risk assessment. These programs aim to equip individuals with the tools and confidence to recognize potentially dangerous situations, assert their boundaries, communicate effectively, and, if necessary, physically defend themselves.

Bay Area ESD Training

But PowerUP Moves training provides more. As a personal development program,  PowerUP Moves views our health as multidimensional, and our beliefs about personal safety can affect our mental, emotional, and physical health. When you feel safe, you can thrive. So we start there. We combine ESD training grounded in empirical evidence with the best health coaching practices. We introduce safety concepts, get you in touch with yourself, and work with you to develop healthy safety habits. One move at a time. The result is a stronger, more confident you!

Meet Your PowerUp Professor

Stephanie Cyr, J.D., is a practicing martial artist, with nearly thirty years of experience across more than 10 different martial arts. She is trained in hand to hand combat and is an expert in violence prevention strategies and trauma informed self defense education. She became a certified Health Coach after years of teaching violence prevention to different communities and seeing a clear connection between personal security and health. This led to the development of PowerUp Moves, her unique approach to improving mental, emotional and physical health through a personal safety lens. Currently, she is a Faculty Lecturer at San Francisco State University where she is developing a minor degree in Empowerment Self Defense and she has served as a Board Consultant for ESD Global, a worldwide network of self defense instructors. She is also a Consultant and Senior Facilitator for PAVE Prevention, a workplace violence prevention company. When she isn’t out hiking with her kids or dogs, she volunteers her time to programs serving the unhoused community and survivors of intimate partner violence. 


PowerUp moves was developed by a university personal defense instructor who has witnessed ESD training improve students’ health and build campus community. From developing physical and mental strength, improving resilience, aiding recovery from past trauma, and facilitating discussions on how societal norms influence personal violence, ESD training can easily be incorporated into movement classes, a social science course, or a part of a larger health program for workplaces and higher education campuses. And it can be made accessible with live or recorded teaching blocks that can be followed at a student’s own pace.

Taking control of how you learn ESD is the first move in your empowerment journey.

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom.”

Viktor E. Frankl

Training Programs

PowerUp your health one move at a time!


90 minute Intensive

An introduction to empowerment self defense training and how it affects your health.  You will learn basic physical and mental skills to keep yourself and others safe.


60 minute Crash Course Series

A course involving a series of 60-minute classes with a layering of safety concepts and in-depth discussion on specific topics of interest. 


Ongoing Series plus 1-1 Zoom

 A comprehensive course providing in-depth movement, discussion, and one on one development for each participant.

Hear What Empowered Sounds Like

The professor [taught] us important skills that are practical and vital. She puts the importance of every move into context and wants us to be safe. She really shows she cares and knows how to gauge what is best for the students. She keeps a positive vibe, and it encourages students to try their best.



The Power Notebook

The Power Notebook is an interactive instructional book and journal rolled into one. This is your empowerment self-defense plan builder and guide that walks you through your journey to wellness, strength, and taking on the world without fear. 

“The most courageous act is still to think for yourself. Aloud.”

Coco Chanel