The Guardian Series holds free jiu-jitsu tournament at Calvary Day School

Published: May. 29, 2023 at 3:33 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - A non profit called ‘The Guardian Series’ is working to grow the sport of jiu-jitsu for the youth of Southeast Georgia.

To have a youth athlete compete in a jiu-jitsu tournament, families can expect to spend $150 to $500 dollars per competition. But thanks to Grant Roszkowiak and a few of his friends which they call, “The Guardian Series,” that wasn’t the case on Saturday at Calvary Day School.

“I have four kids. I went to a tournament in Hardeeville and it’s just really expensive for my family. I have a four-year-old, a six-year-old, an eight-year-old and a two-year-old. It’s like $120 per kid. Traveling there and paying for food, it’s just really hard for parents and families to be able to do jui-jitsu. Me and a group of friends said hey, we want to do something that kids love and promote the sport, so we made a completely free tournament,” said Grant Roszkowiak, the tournament director.

The turnout far exceeded expectations.

“We were hoping for 50 to 60 kids because we’ve never done this before. We ended up with 130 kids and 250 registrations. We had one of the founders of the sport in America came and spoke. It’s just been an awesome thing and far exceeded my expectations.”

Medals were given out to the winners of each age group and weight class but even those who lost took home a win.

“Win or lose, you win. The meaning of that is if you lose - you may have won more. You got that experience of not getting what you wanted and then having to go back to your world and regroup and try it again. Now, you’re going to grow.”

There are plenty of other benefits gained from competing in Jiu-Jitsu tournaments as well.

“They work through anxiety and stress and being in positions that are uncomfortable. They learn how to process some of these things. It’s also about meeting other kids. We do it in a way where it’s fun and not I have to win, but rather I get to compete and be with friends. It’s a really cool opportunity for kids to push themselves as far as they can and that will translate to school and other sports. They learn to say, ‘I can do things even though they are hard.’”