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Can a bard that uses Song of Rest during a short rest use hit die to recover hit points and benefit from the song? I wonder if using the Song of Rest would qualify as an activity more strenuous than reading, eating, resting or bandaging, as how the short rest definition puts it.

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2 Answers 2

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Song of Rest:

Beginning at 2nd level, you can use soothing music or oration to help revitalize your wounded allies during a short rest. If you or any friendly creature who can hear your performance regain hit points at the end of the short rest, each of those creatures regains an extra 1d6 hit points (PHB pg 54).

The RAW states that this is a power specifically to be used during a short rest, so, no, it is not too strenuous. The power also states that if the bard playing this song regains HP at the end of the short rest they too gain back extra HP.

In conclusion:

  1. Song of Rest can be used during a Short Rest.
  2. Song of rest also affects the player using it.
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  • \$\begingroup\$ With the solution catering to your immediate needs, be sure to consult the recent errata of the PHB for a clarification on the bonus healing. \$\endgroup\$
    – Eric
    Commented Aug 6, 2015 at 11:57
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    \$\begingroup\$ Does that mean that all Bardic songs are considered not to be strenuous, or should this be an exception? \$\endgroup\$
    – Joninean
    Commented Aug 6, 2015 at 15:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Joninean: I know it's been years since you asked that, but there's no generic "bardic song" in 5e. There are just features like Song of Rest, and possibly other features which may follow their own rules (e.g. the Glamour bard's Enthralling Inspiration feature). Largely, I don't think these are described as "strenuous", so it's left to the DM to adjudicate. \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented Jul 16, 2020 at 21:56
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The bard can benefit from their own Song of Rest if they spend Hit Dice.

The description of Song of Rest says (PHB, page 54):

Beginning at 2nd level, you can use soothing music or oration to help revitalize your wounded allies during a short rest. If you or any friendly creatures who can hear your performance regain hit points at the end of the short rest by spending one or more Hit Dice, each of those creatures regains an extra 1d6 hit points.

The key issue here is that you, the bard, have HD to spend during that short rest to recover hit points. If you have at least one HD and you use it, then you too gain the benefit of your song/oration.

If you don't expend the HD, then no, your song won't benefit you, even if it does benefit your allies/party.

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