Adiabatic pulses have been employed in spectroscopic imaging and relaxation rate measurements at 4.7 T to demonstrate the feasibility of obtaining spectroscopic data from the complete sensitive volume of a surface coil using the surface coil as a transmitter and receiver. With conventional B1 sensitive pulses, spectroscopic localization or imaging techniques, such as chemical‐shift imaging, yield resonance intensities that are distorted severely as a function of space, and maximal signal is detected from a small region within the complete sensitive volume of the coil. With adiabatic pulses, however, this problem is eliminated completely. In addition, a new method of spatial localization is introduced. This method, referred to as FLAX‐ISIS, is a derivative of longitudinally modulated Fourier series window and ISIS approaches and utilizes adiabatic inversion and excitation pulses. The method allows construction of localized spectra for multiple regions along the surface coil axis by postacquisition data manipulation of a single set of free induction decays. These techniques were applied to the study of the myocardium using an implanted surface coil in an instrumented closed‐chest canine model and in an open‐chest preparation. The results demonstrate that one‐dimensional techniques are adequate for transmural detection of metabolites provided signal origin is restricted to a column perpendicular to the left ventricle wall. © 1989 Academic Press, Inc.