MR relaxation times, fiber composition, nonmyofiber space, water content, and fat content of human psoas and multifidus muscle samples of 10 male cadavers were studied in vitro. The T1 and T2 relaxation times of multifidus muscle were significantly longer than those of the psoas muscle. On average, type 1 fibers (slow fibers with a small cross-sectional diameter) predominated in both muscles. There was no correlation between the relative mass of type 1 or 2 fibers (fast fibers with a large cross-sectional diameter) or nonmyofiber space and the relaxation times. The quantity of fat in the muscle did not correlate with the relaxation times either.