Is a Change Underway?
Some students may be familiar with the new club that was formed last semester called Girl Gains and the impact it has had on our school. But what exactly is Girl Gains?
The club started on Vanguard campus by Kassandra Quintana (Junior, Kinesiology Major) is a part of a larger organization that was formed at San Diego State University in 2020. Since the formation, the organization has exploded with popularity, spreading to 79 different schools across the U.S.
The reason for its popularity can be attributed to its mission statement. On the official Girl Gains website it states, “Our mission is to promote female weightlifting and empower women to feel strong and beautiful in a judgment free community. Whether you’re a dedicated gym goer or a curious beginner, Girl Gains is a college campus-originated organization and an evolving online community here to support you in every stage of your fitness journey.” Seeing as Vanguard University is 68% female, the club is fitting for our campus’ demographic.
After starting its second semester as a club on campus, it seems that Girl Gains has started to make some waves in Vanguard’s regulations. Anyone who has attended the on-campus gym knows about the enforced dress-code. At the fitness center, everyone must wear non-cutoff shirts with sleeves—meaning no crop tops, tank tops, or muscle tees are permitted. In addition to this, spandex or cutoff shorts are also not allowed. This is only similar to the dress code in Vanguard’s code of conduct in that it, can be compared to the statement “student’s casual and formal attire should reflect good taste and modesty.” Kassandra and the other girls of Girl Gains are in the works to remove these restrictions.
In an interview with Kassandra, we asked exactly what she is hoping to change about the fitness center’s dress code. She said, “I’m trying to get rid of it completely because it’s just very limiting for many people.”
But what does the gym dress code really have to do with Girl Gains? It seems the dress code applies to everyone, not just the members of the club. Kassandra says it has to do with the core values of the organization. She explained, “Getting rid of the dress code has so much to do with Girl Gains because we have four core values and one of them is body positivity. The other three—community, knowledge, and strength—were really easy to apply on campus, but body positivity was really hard because if you’re constantly told to cover up your body, you struggle to love it. Being in Girl Gains made me realize that this needed to be done, not just for Girl Gains, but for everyone.”
Kassandra also wants everyone to know that Girl Gains is making this change to try and make as many people comfortable in the gym as possible. She implied that she doesn’t want anyone to be turned away from the gym because of the change saying, “I know there could be people out there who do feel uncomfortable with the rule being changed but I just want people to know that we don’t mean this to be intimidation or for anyone to feel worse about the gym, we are doing this to make everyone feel comfortable. I know that the fitness center workers are really open to helping other people if they feel uncomfortable with the rules change—if there is any chance that someone doesn’t want to go to the gym because someone else is wearing a tank top, they can go to the fitness center worker and talk to them about it and things can get settled. I just don’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable with this happening.”
Now, be on the lookout for an announcement about the dress code. When asked about when the change would come to fruition, Kassandra said, “There is progress. We can’t say when yet, but there is a change coming.”
Certainly, Girl Gains has already made an impact on campus, who knows what else they can do in the years to come.