TEMPE, Ariz. - Krav Maga is a military self-defense system developed for the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), now turned mainstream workout.

“It has to be simple,” said Derrek Hofrichter, owner of EVKM in Tempe. “For it to be a good self-defense system, it has to be easy to learn moves.”

The classes are an hour long. Participants start with a warm-up, learn some combative moves and then a defense situation like getting grabbed or choked.

“So many people -- who have never done this before, they have never done self-defense, they’ve never done kickboxing -- are intrigued by the workout,” said Hofrichter. “A lot of them are looking to lose some weight and looking to get into shape.”

I tried the class with no prior combative experience. The moves are easy to learn and the experienced peers help with form and motivation to keep you going once you hit a cardio wall. The instructor really broke down the moves in simple-to-memorize steps. First-timers should not be nervous to try out the popular workout utilized in Hollywood.

“Pretty much anytime you see an actor or an actress get signed on for an action movie,” he said, “they are [going] into Krav Maga classes.”

A recent example is the newest Wonder Woman: Gal Gadot.

“She is a great example because she is Israeli,” said Hofrichter, “and she was a Krav Maga instructor.”

Depending on the program or how many classes you sign up for, prices range from $89 to $199 per month. EVKM also offers a free class to any newbies. There are two locations: Downtown Phoenix (near First and Pierce streets) and Tempe (near Apache Boulevard and McClintock Drive).

For more information, visit www.evkmselfdefense.com.