"This is a 5 Star recommendation for Albany Karate and Sensei Dara. My son has been training with her for the past 7 years and I can see a considerable change in his self confidence. She works with every student at their comfort level and is a passionate and energetic teacher. The kids love her and have fun in her class, at the same time they learn discipline, respect, compassion, self defense and teamwork. I will be enrolling my younger daughter this spring since my son has gained so much from this program." Ruby K. March 2014

"I can't praise this class enough. My daughter started the class when she was seven years old, shy and not very coordinated. The class helped to build up her confidence dramatically. Dara is a wonderful teacher, she gives attention to each and every student. During the class the kids also learn to help and support each other. Highly recommended for all ages." Ira R. March 2014

I wanted to personally thank you for you and your teaching style. We had tried another martial arts class that wasn’t a good fit at all. Our son really appreciates and responds well to your approach to teaching.” Elizabeth J. July 2016

My son really looks forward to class every week. There are lots of kids but they seem to understand the routine and are disciplined. I also like the fact that the classes are paid for on a weekly/session basis (you don't know how many places we spoke with that won't actually tell you how much they cost and/or require a massive up-front investment)." Eugene L. March 2014


"My son has been enrolled in Sensei Dara's class for 3 years and it's been amazing to see his physical and emotional development progressing through Sensei's leadership skills. At first, my son was reluctant to attend class but Sensei really helped him boost his confidence and self esteem. Now, my son looks forward to class and he's excited by the challenges. It's also great to see how Sensei encourages the older students to be leaders for the younger students. Being taught by one of the few female Sensei’s has the extra added bonus of the male and female students observing a strong female teacher in action. We feel fortunate to have found this class." Nancy H. 2014

"My son has been a student of Sensei Daras’ for two years now and I enthusiastically recommend her and Albany Karate. Sensei Dara naturally connects with her students, inspires confidence and joy, and she intuitively has deep insight into each student's individual development. As part of her class she teaches important mental aspects such as discipline, resilience and respect. We are grateful that we found this wonderful dojo that has enriched our life in so many ways. Sensei Dara is simply phenomenal!" S.S. January 2013

"My daughter had lost her love for dance after three years of training. Sensei Dara Connolly not only helped her confidence, she had started taking dance again. Martial arts is her number one dance of course. The length of time for the cost is great as well. If your child has lost interest (or sparkle...) just try to see if Albany Karate can get your child's joy back! I will be entering my son in this fall because he already is mimicking the moves of his sister." Desiri B. March 2014


"This is a great Karate environment for kids that are looking to learn and enjoy a sport where competition with others is not the key driver of the activity. Sensei Dara and the more advanced students do a wonderful job of bringing everyone along. Mutual respect and striving for personal achievement to ones abilities are the watchword. That said, the instruction is serious, and the children learn proper technique. My son can't wait for the class every week." D.M. 2014

"My son has been taking classes with Sensei Dara for over four years, and loves it. He enjoys both the sport, as well as the camaraderie of his classmates. He has benefited from her teachings in many ways-- physically he is more coordinated and stronger, and mentally more confident and respectful of others. These accomplishments have extended beyond the rewards he has received through earning new belts; he is a better person outside of class too. He has grown from being timid and scared to perform a kata in front of class, to a willing and eager student who strives for continued success. Sensei Dara sets clear expectations and teaches non-violence, self-defense, and a set of values (courtesy, self control & respect among them), which are perfect for young students. I'm happy that my son remains committed to this class, as he is learning valuable life lessons along with karate." Lynne Y. January 2013

"Thank you Sensei Dara for being such a wonderful presence in all our lives. You do wonderful work & we love you for all that you have done to help our son blossom." Jessie B. 2010


"We are very grateful to you for this wonderful part of our daughter's life." Patty C. 2010

"Albany Karate is the most empowering and fun karate studio for kids because of Sensei Dara's amazing ability to inspire her students. Her non-aggressive and energetic teaching style helps to build self-confidence in all of her students as she gets them to try hard in every class. No matter the abilities of her students, (beginner, intermediate, or advanced) her one-on-one and group instruction helps each of her students have fun in learning Tae Kwon Do and Karate techniques and forms, as well as self-defense skills." Syd K. January 2013

"Sensei Dara is simply Amazing!" Paul S. December 2014

Email: dara(at)albanykarateforkids.com