We teach practical skills to promote safety within the world. The skills we teach work in all scenarios, for all ages and body types, and are informed by the context of our culture. It is grounded in an understanding of social inequity and social justice and attempts to address the whole spectrum of violence within our society.

In short, we teach people to do whatever they need to do to help them feel safe, strong, and respected in all situations.



Since 2006, IMPACT Personal Safety of Colorado has trained thousands of adults, children, community groups, service organizations and businesses.

The IMPACT full-force, full-contact form of self-defense has its roots in the early 1970s with a group of martial artists who developed a new form of self-defense for women in response to the assault and rape of one of their female black-belts. Their system would  address the needs and capabilities of women, acknowledge women’s issues, and use training methods that featured more realism and therefore better results.

In 1984, the seeds for Impact Personal Safety were planted when our founder, Lisa Gaeta, took her first “Model Mugging” class. Once she fought off the mugger for the first time, she knew her life was changed for ever. She trained to become an instructor and soon after began to develop the verbal skills curriculum which is now so prevalent in most IMPACT training around the globe. Because of this work, in conjunction with the writings of Gavin De Becker in his groundbreaking book the Gift of Fear, our ‘verbals’ have become our defining feature and what many grads report as the most valuable thing they take from class.

Amelia Norfleet Dorn (IMPACT Personal Safety of Colorado’s Founder) received her instructor training from IMPACT’s original founder, Lisa Gaeta. She served on the staff of IMPACT Personal Safety of Southern California from 1997 to 2005. In 2006, Amelia and husband David Dorn founded IMPACT Personal Safety of Colorado, bringing the program to their home state. Lisa and the Southern California chapter sponsored the Colorado organization until it was ready to stand as a fully-developed chapter in 2012.

Recent developments: Empowered Family course, DOVE partnership, ESD North America

NEED: History of ESD,