This study quantifies variance components of two-dimensional strains in the left-ventricular heart wall assessed by magnetic resonance (MR) tagging in 18 healthy xxvolunteers. For a 7-mm tagging grid and homogeneous strain analysis, the intersubject variability and measurement error were estimated, as well as the intra- and interobserver variability. The variance components were calculated for the mean strain of a circumferential sector. The results show that the measurement error was almost equal to the intra-observer variability. With four circumferential sectors of 90° each, approximately 65% of the total variance in ε r and ε c was due to intersubject variability, the remaining 35% was due to measurement error. With 12 sectors of 30° each, the intersubject variability and measurement error both contributed 50% to the total variance. With 18 sectors of 20° each, only 40% of the total variance was due to intersubject variability. The total variability increased with the number of sectors and therefore the number of sectors used in a study will be a trade-off between segment size (defining spatial resolution) and variability.