I’m playing a grappling Eldritch Knight, and wanted to know if advantage on Strength checks (from the enlarge/reduce spell) would make my grapple check - which is an Athletics check - have advantage.

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    \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to the site! Please take the tour when you get the chance. It's important to remember that there are thousands of RPGs out there; can you tell us which game and edition you're asking about? \$\endgroup\$
    – Oblivious Sage
    Dec 20, 2018 at 21:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Does 5e mean "Dungeons and Dragons 5e" of the fifth edition of another game? \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2018 at 21:28
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    \$\begingroup\$ My bad I’m playing dnd 5e \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben
    Dec 20, 2018 at 21:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ Thanks, Ben, adding that tag should get the question reopened. Please take a look at this question on grappling, it appears to be related. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 20, 2018 at 21:51
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    \$\begingroup\$ @KorvinStarmast I saw that and I was still unclear if adv on strength also counts for athletics. \$\endgroup\$
    – Ben
    Dec 20, 2018 at 22:07

3 Answers 3


Advantage on Strength checks gives advantage on grapples

The rule for grappling says:

...you try to seize the target by making a grapple check instead of an attack roll: a Strength (Athletics) check contested by the target’s Strength (Athletics) or Dexterity (Acrobatics) check...

Emphasis mine.

Enlarge gives advantage to all Strength checks, which include Strength (Athletics) checks.

  • \$\begingroup\$ As a bonus, this text also means that you have advantage to contest anything smaller that tries to grapple you! Unless you decide to use your Dexterity (Acrobatics) check instead... \$\endgroup\$ Dec 21, 2018 at 23:08

A Strength (Athletics) check is, in fact, a Strength check - the hint is in the word "Strength".

If you are initiating a grapple then a Strength (Athletics) check is what you use and if you have advantage(disadvantage) on Strength checks you have advantage(disadvantage) on this check because, as pointed out above, its a Strength check.

If you are trying to avoid or escape from a grapple then you can choose to use Strength (Athletics) or Dexterity (Acrobatics). The first is a Strength check, the second isn't - its a Dexterity check. As a quick aside, Initiative is a Dexterity check so advantage(disadvantage) on Dexterity checks gives you the same on Initiative rolls.

If you are keen on building a grappler, you should check out the Grappler's Guide, one of the prime things it recommends aiming for is access to the Enlarge spell, partly to get the advantage you identified but also to allow you to grapple Huge sized creatures.


I believe so

When you initiate a grapple, you do so by:

... making a grapple check instead of an attack roll: a Strength (Athletics) check contested by the target’s Strength (Athletics)

Meaning that advantage on Strength checks does give you advantage when trying to grapple.


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