Your spine is made up of bones called vertebrae, and these are separated by tough, fibrous, flexible disks. The disks allow your spine to flex, bend, and twist - and also act as shock absorbers between the vertebrae.
If your back is injured, strained, or if you have chronic pain, the individual segments of your spine can become immobile, tight, and restricted. This fixation of the spine creates tremendous pressure on the disks.
This pressure can cause the disks to bulge or herniate, or can cause inflammation in the nerves that travel from your spinal cord to the rest of your body. If the nerves become irritated or pinched, it can cause back pain, sciatica, or even numbness and tingling in your hip and leg.