Hooked Martial Arts + Fitness in Opelika offers self-defense classes for various ages while providing an exciting and educational experience.
Hooked Martial Arts + Fitness is located at 1220 Fox Run Ave., Suite 110, and is open 4 to 8 p.m., Monday through Thursday.
The facility officially opened in January under the ownership of Andy Roberts.
According to Roberts, he has been practicing martial arts since 1996, is a first-degree blackbelt in jiu-jitsu and has experience in cage fighting. He has coached hundreds of gold medal competitors in his almost 20-year career.
Roberts said that he previously owned a martial arts school for about ten years but took a hiatus until his wife recognized martial arts was something he needed back in his life and encouraged him to open another martial arts school.
“I started realizing the mental health benefits of training martial arts was missing in my life,” Roberts said. “I didn’t realize that I was using martial arts sort of like therapy, and I was using it to manage my stress, and it was having an impact on my mental health that I was unaware of.”
According to Roberts, his facility offers teaching in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, kickboxing for fitness and sports combat, weight training and personal training.
He teaches the classes himself, so the quality of the instruction is high, Roberts said.
“Brazilian jiu-jitsu is a martial art that is safe and effective to learn and train,” Roberts said. “It is applicable both for sport combat and self-defense combat. If you are young and vigorous and you want to go to tournaments and win medals, it is a great outlet. So, if you find that you’re looking for something more like that, it kind of fills that need as well. So, it’s a very versatile martial art. Because of that, that makes up the bulk of our training. The kickboxing tends to be more popular for younger folks.”
Roberts said his facility offers these classes for almost all ages.
“We teach four years and up,” he said. “I’ve had students as old as 74 years old.”
According to Roberts, martial arts has many benefits outside of self-defense and fitness that are glossed over.
“The people at our school are all driven to better themselves towards a mutual goal of self-defense, hand or fitness,” Roberts said. “It’s a group of people who are optimistic and positive-minded, and it’s a group of people that if you surround yourself with them for two and a half hours, two nights a week, you’ll find that you become a more positive and optimistic person. You become more about bettering yourself. That positivity and optimism that you see two and a half hours twice a week will start to kind of splash off on you. It’s a benefit that is sort of outside of fitness or self-defense, but it’s a really beautiful thing to see.”
Hooked Martial Arts + Fitness offers a free introductory one-on-one lesson and a two-week free trial.
For more information, visit the website at