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Seaside Yoga: How M.J. and Bentley Jackson started Sculpt Studio and created a wellness community

Margaret Abrams

Posted on Mar 12, 2021 in Yoga , Bentley Jackson , Sculpt Studio , workouts , Melissa Davis , Seaside Yoga

If you want to join Seaside’s wellness community, there are yoga options all spring and summer. Join M.J. for Yoga Sculpt by Sculpt Studio at the Seaside Pavilion every Saturday morning at 8:00 a.m. starting on April 1. Or check out Melissa Davis Yoga Sunday - Friday Vinyasa Yoga at 8:30 a.m. on the Seaside Pavilion. 

When Mike “M.J.” Jackson and his wife Bentley Jackson moved to 30A, they dreamed of starting their own yoga sculpt studio - but more importantly, their own wellness community, which they founded in Seaside.

Over the summer, the young couple hosted wildly popular high energy yoga sculpt classes in Seaside. First, they popped up on the amphitheater stage, but when that proved to be a bit too sweaty, they moved to the Seaside Pavilion. Now, they’re in their own space on 30A in a bright, sunny studio that also houses a co-working space where fellow wellness experts offer classes.

The couple first met in Dallas, where M.J. was teaching. Bentley, an Alabama native, grew up vacationing on 30A with her family, but M.J. hadn’t been to the area before. When they decided they wanted a break from the big city, Seaside seemed ideal. They even got engaged on the beach, so it seemed like the perfect place to relocate. “I was back visiting, and was quickly reminded of how magical of a place it really is,” Bentley said.

“When Bentley and I first met, I laughingly told her my wildest dream was to have a small yoga studio at the beach,” M.J. said. The yogi “was pleasantly surprised” to find “a true want and need for my passion and that there’s a younger age group that lives here full-time.”

“We first started at the amphitheater and that first class on the stage was a bit surreal. I just felt really honored to be there,” M.J. said. “More and more people started coming on Saturday mornings. Eventually, a dedicated group formed that still came to class even during the hottest of Saturdays, pouring down sheets of rain and hurricane warnings.”

M.J. added that, “It was just an incredible group of like-minded people that all got to meet in a new and safe way, in a time when we weren’t necessarily able to connect with many others. We were all just outside, sweating bullets, bumping music and getting healthier together during the crazy summer of 2020.”

The class then moved to the Seaside Pavilion, which M.J. calls his “favorite outdoor venue in a decade of teaching.”

No matter what the weather, his dedicated following would meet at the beach on Saturday mornings for a high intensity class. M.J. said, “It was cool to have a mix of locals and vacationers from all over meet, connect and celebrate where we are, in the heart of Seaside. Some of these people probably never would’ve met otherwise.”

After they felt the excitement from the community, they decided to continue the energy year-round by opening Sculpt Studio 30A, right by the beach like he always dreamed about.