Many people find immediate relief from back pain by doing the long spine massage move on the Pilates reformer. You put your feet in the straps of the reformer and it gently lifts your legs and lower body up off of the reformer carriage beginning a luxurious, long spine massage.
The straps keep a comfortable tension so that you can head straight upwards until your lower body is completely elevated and your shoulders and head are left on the carriage.
At this point in the move you open your legs to a hip width distance apart and then begin to slowly stretch and lower the spine onto the carriage. Each vertebrae receives a massage as it slowly comes in contact with the carriage. This releases tightness and stress and helps you feel relaxed like after a massage.
Take all the time you need to lower your spine down onto the carriage. The tension that is released during this exercise can relieve spasms, soreness and pain in the back.
I like to especially emphasize the release of the lower spine in this move as the lower spine tends to hold the most tension and congestion in the back.
Once the spine is completely rested on the carriage the legs can circle around and return back into a 90 degree position where you can either repeat the exercise or finish.
Repeating slowly over and over again can be soothing and significant release and relief can be experienced. The natural tension of the straps helps the spine renew itself.