Recently I listened to an interview with a guy named Jacob Schoen. He is a practitioner of something called the ELDOA method. The idea behind ELDOA ties into something I came across recently while reading the book Natural Born Heroes. Our muscles are encased in a leathery bag-like structure known as the fascia. This fascia is essentially continuous running throughout the body - kind of like a Power Ranger suit just underneath the skin. Tugging on any piece of the suit affects the tension everywhere else.
Since the spinal column has muscles, this fascia suit is also woven into the vertebrae. In the ELDOA method there is a specific body position designed to target a release in each of the spaces between the different vertebrae segments. When in the particular position, that specific segment (L4-L5 is a problematic one for people with lower back pain) will be decompressed. This allows fluid to re-enter the disc which should help to alleviate chronic pain. Chiropractors take a similar approach except they use a machine to decompress vertebrae segments.
The technique was developed by a French physician. The positions are similar to those in yoga. Many people can vouch for yoga having improved their back condition. I like to do the L5-S1 hold before going to bed. It makes my lower back feel great and helps with sleep quality.