With help from Gravitas Martial Arts, the Conway Police Department held a Women’s Self Defense Class to train residents with potentially life-saving techniques.

"Our goal is to teach women basic self defense tactics they can use to protect themselves should they be attacked," CPD spokesman LaTresha Woodruff said.

The four-hour class was held Saturday at Gravitas MMA on Front Street in Conway.

SWAT Lt. Lee Wood said the police department holds this course as a hands-on learning experience for women in the community to learn basic maneuvers.

He said Saturday’s class was the second women’s defense class CPD has held and that Conway police plan to continue helping train women with self defense tactics.

"It’s a great opportunity," Wood said. "We can’t teach them everything in one day, but they get a little training for their protection."

Woodruff said she advised the women who participated Saturday to continue practicing the maneuvers they learned so the techniques remain fresh in their minds should the need to use them occurs.

"In order for these tactics to be effective, we encourage women to practice them from time to time," she said.

While the next course date is unknown at this time, Woodruff said CPD looks forward to continue to train women in the community.

"The CPD plans to hold these classes for as long as there is interest," she said.

Jonny Wester, Gravitas Martial Arts owner, led Saturday’s classes. His studio offers several training classes including mixed martial arts (MMA), self defense, kickboxing, Brazilian Jiu Jitsu, fitness and kids classes.