In CHAARG: Sun Devils bring women’s health and fitness club to ASU

January 25, 2021

ASU has more than 1,000 student clubs and organizations to choose from. But if you can’t find one that fits your interests — you can start a new one! 

Carly Todd, 19, a sophomore majoring in digital and integrated marketing communications, decided to bring an organization to campus that added something new to campus life and also led her to finding great friends. 

CHAARG is a national organization that stands for “changing health attitudes and actions to recreate girls.” With chapters at more than 100 colleges across the country, the organization is empowering women to get out and get fit while supporting one another. 

Chaarg executive board stands strong on the steps of Old Main

Chaarg executive board stands strong on the steps of Old Main.

Photo Courtesy of @carlyraes.photography

“I honestly could not find my place last year as a freshman. I could not find the people who I wanted to be around,” Todd said about her struggle with making connections at ASU. 

CHAARG was very big in the Midwest. So Todd, who is from Indiana, thought it would be a great club to join. 

“I remembered CHAARG, but ASU didn’t have it so I thought, what do I have to lose, I might as well try and start it,” Todd said. 

By the end of her first year, she was approved for the fall 2020 semester as the president of ASU in CHAARG. As someone who enjoys going to the gym and is interested in health and wellness, Todd understood that fitness clubs were sometimes misunderstood as being body shaming.

“We are not a fitness organization that wants to shame girls for their bodies. Health is going to look different on everybody, and it is our mission to help girls understand that,” Todd said. 

Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the ASU in CHAARG members started by doing Zoom workouts and get togethers. They would sign up for the online SDFC fitness classes or go out for a healthy meal together. As campus became more open to small gatherings, Todd would set up small groups, where they would meet at the SDFC fields at the Tempe campus and do socially distanced yoga. 

“We want girls to learn to find their own fit and their own balance. We are a positive vibes only group,” Todd said. 

All women at ASU are encouraged to join. For $48 a semester, members will get CHAARG T-shirts and can get involved in numerous projects and events on and around campus. 

The CHAARG community at ASU is growing on Instagram, where members create “@_inchaarg” accounts. These accounts show the daily lives of members — from their favorite healthy meal recipes to workouts to an update on their mental health and fitness journeys. 

“The CHAARG Instagram accounts make an impact on me because it makes me see that I am not the only one that feels this way. I hope that my posts make other people feel that way, too,” Todd said. 

If you are interested in joining this strong group of women or would like more information, follow Todd’s Instagram or visit the national organization’s website.