System of Study


American Open Karate System

American Open Karate System (AOK System) is a blend of styles incorporating traditional art form with the most innovative techniques of modern day karate.  The mechanical principles, technical aspects, and psychological elements are based on ancient arts of hand-to-hand combat.

Kara (Empty) + Te (Hand) = Empty Hand

AOK System can be divided into four categories of the martial arts:  traditional art form called kata, self-defense techniques called goshin waza, the art of ancient weaponry called kobudo, and sport karate called kumite.

AOK System Kata include American Open Style, Shuri-ryu, Shotokan, Shorin-ryu, Shito-ryu, Goju-ryu, and White Crane (Hakutsuru) Forms.  Kata art form, the most formal of karate exercises (ancient weapons and empty-hand) are essential to a good mental and physical foundation of karatedo basics. American Open Style Kata are the foundation of the AOK System.  They were created by Grandmaster Piddington under the influence of Okinawan styles such as Shotokan-ryu, Shorei-ryu, Shorin-ryu, and Goju-ryu.  These kata are designed to compete with today's tournament competition in the open and traditional art form divisions.

There are ten empty-hand American Open Style Kata.  Affiliated members of the American Karate Academies National Association (AKANA) practice at least seven of these as a common bond:

  1.  Left Pivot Form
  2.  Right Pivot Form
  3.  H-Pattern I
  4.  H-Pattern II
  5.  H-Pattern III
  6.  Lion Form
  7.  Swift like the Deer
  8.  Five Animal Form
  9.  Hot like the Sun
  10.  Cool like the Moon

There are eight empty-hand Shuri-ryu Kata practiced in the AOK System:

  1.  Sanchin (Naha-te)
  2.  Naihanchi Sho (Shuri-te)
  3.  Naihanchi Ni (Shuri-te)
  4.  Naihanchi San (Shuri-te)
  5.  Go Pei Sho (Hsing-i)
  6.  Dan Enn Sho (Hsing-i)
  7.  Nan Dan Sho (Naha-te)
  8.  Tensho (Naha-te)

There are presently four empty-hand Shotokan Kata practiced in the AOK System:

  1.  Bassai Dai
  2.  Enpi Sho
  3.  Unsu
  4.  Gojushiho Sho

There are five Hakutsura (White Crane) Kata practiced in AOK System:

  1.  Hakutsura Shodan
  2.  Hakutsura Nidan
  3.  Hakutsura Sandan
  4.  Hakutsura Yodan
  5.  Hakutsura Godan

Other empty-hand kata practiced in AOK System:

  1.  Chinto (Shito-ryu)
  2.  Anan (Shorin-ryu)
  3.  Suparinpei (Goju-ryu)

AOK System Goshin Waza evolve from a variety of styles including Karate, Judo, Grappling, Jui-Jitsu, Kyusho-Jutsu, Kenpo, Aikido, Wing Chun, Chin-Na, Jeet Kune Do, Krav Maga, and Hapkido.  These combative waza include blocking, striking, kicking, joint-locking, sweeping, choking, and throwing in order to defend against any strike, grab, or weapon such as stick, knife, hatchet, or gun by striking vital areas and pressure points using the fingers, hands, elbows, feet, knees, forearms, and head.  These self-defense waza are designed to be effective against an attacker from outside, to inside, to on-the-ground ranges.  There are thirty-six goshin waza and thirty-six grab art waza in the AOK System.

AOK System Kobudo consists of ancient weaponry such as the bo and jo staff, oar, walking stick (cane), escrima, nunchaku, sai, kama, and katana sword.  Many of these weapons are practiced at the Yudansha (black belt) level.

There are currently fourteen American Open Kobudo Kata practiced in the American Open Karate System.

  1.  Bo Kata 1
  2.  Bo Kata 2
  3.  Tonfa Kata 1
  4.  Tonfa Kata 2
  5.  Nunchaku Kata 1
  6.  Nunchaku Kata 2
  7.  Sai Kata 1
  8.  Sai Kata 2
  9.  Kama Kata 1
  10.  Kama Kata 2
  11.  Oar Kata 1
  12.  Oar Kata 2
  13.  Cane Kata 1
  14.  Two-man Bo Set

AOK System Kumite Techniques that include traditional kumite, point karate, continuous sparring, full-contact karate, kickboxing, grappling, and Muay Thai come from world champions, such as Joe Lewis, Bill Wallace, Howard Jackson, and Chuck Norris.  These sparring techniques are used in reactionary drills, pad drills, and sparring to condition students for sport karate competition.  There are twenty-seven fighting techniques practiced in the AOK System.

AOK System is not just a system of self-defense, physical fitness, and competition.  It is a true art which stresses character building by instilling traditional values of discipline, responsibility, confidence, humility, courtesy, and respect.

AOK System students learn to overcome their fears and weaknesses by gaining confidence through the martial arts.  In return, AOK System karateka learn to avoid or walk away from a physical confrontation, if possible, but defend themselves or others, if absolutely necessary.

The best self-defense is no defense!

AOK System is a way of discipline, not a religion.  The spiritual aspects are based on Christian biblical principles.

AOK System stems from a great heritage that is influenced by many of the greatest martial artist in our era.  Ricky and Randy Smith look forward to training all students to their fullest potential...mind, body, and spirit, in this elaborate system of quality study -- The American Open Karate System.


Jerry C. Piddington's Instructors:
Caylor Adkins - Shotokan
Tom Crites - Shorin-ryu
Mike Stone - American Karate Champion - Shorin-ryu
Robert A. Trias (1922-1989) - The Father of American Karate - Shuri/Shorei
Tadashi Yamashita - Japanese/American Karate Pioneer - Shorin-ryu
Ed Parker (1931-1990) - The Father of American Kenpo Karate
Chris Armstrong - Goju-ryu
Al Dacascos - Kajukenbo

Ricky and Randy Smith's Instructors:
Ronnie Gregory - Tae Kwon Do
Gary Basinger - Kyokushinkai
Dave Adams - Jee Do Kwan/Kickboxing
Joe Lewis - World Kickboxing Champion
Troy Price - Shintoyoshin-ryu Jiu-Jitsu/Shurite Bu-Jutsu
Ridgely Abele - Chief Instructor of Shuri-ryu
Jerry Piddington - Founder of American Open Style/Headmaster of American Shorei/Shorin