# Can a prone grappler both stand and move the same turn?

It's clear how a creature both grappled and prone can stand - they can't. But what about the one doing the grapple?

Assuming both grappler (speed of 60 feet) and grappled are prone*, how does the grappler stand?

PHB pg 190/191

## Being Prone

Standing up takes more effort; doing so costs an amount of movement equal to half your speed. For example, if your speed is 30 feet, you must spend 15 feet of movement to stand up.

PHB pg 195

Moving a Grappled Creature. When you move, you can drag or carry the grappled creature with you, but your speed is halved [..]

I can see three ways it can be interpreted:

• The grappler has a speed of 60 feet. Standing up takes 30 feet. They stand, and only have 30 feet of movement left. Having someone grappled, they can only move 30 feet in any direction with the one they've grappled -- but they also have exactly 30 feet left. So they can move 30 feet in any direction with the one they grappled, so that being prone and grappling someone has no effect on you.

• The grappler has a speed of 60 feet. Standing up takes 30 feet. They now have 30 feet left. Since they have someone else in a grapple, their speed is halved to 15 feet, and they can move with the grappled creature 15 feet.

• The grappler has a speed of 60 feet. Since they have someone in a grapple, they only have 30 feet of movement. Standing up requires 30 feet of movement. So when they stand up, they have no movement left.

Also consider the case when the grappler has the Athletic feat, allowing them to stand up with only 5 feet of movement instead of half their total.

* They're both prone because the grappler jumped down onto an enemy, and grappled them as a bonus action via a Feat.

There are two different things happening here: your movement speed being halved, and spending half your movement speed. These work differently, and the order matters. The end result is that the grappler can't move-drag after standing up from prone. Here's how it works:

Let's use 60′ for the sake of example.

2. Standing up costs half your movement.

Your current speed is 60′, half of which is 30′. To stand up you spend 30′ of movement. Your speed is still 60′.

3. Dragging while grappling halves your movement speed. Your movement speed this round has now been reduced to exactly how much you've already spent, so you will have 0 feet of movement to spend.

Your current speed is 60′, but attempting to move-drag a grappled opponent changes it to 30′. You have already spent 30′ of movement and have zero feet left to spend.

The end result is that after standing up, you still have half your movement left, but as soon as you try to drag a grappled opponent you will have no movement left and remain where you are, so realistically you won't bother trying to drag that round. (You could still end the grapple and move your remaining half movement though, of course.)

• @ShadowRadiance Comments aren't provided to have discussions with, so I've cleaned those up. I also took the opportunity to clean the rest of the comments up (which are interesting reading but not useful for helping update the post) by moving them to a chat room, so you could continue the discussion there — see the next comment for the link. Jul 2, 2018 at 1:13
• Comments are not for extended discussion; this conversation has been moved to chat. Jul 2, 2018 at 1:15

This answer, written a long time after this question was last addressed, contradicts the Accepted Answer which I submit is in error, as you will see.

Executive Summary:

The amount of distance a grappler can move after standing from prone is half their available movement, because standing consumed half of their initial available movement. Grappling does not change the rules related to standing from Prone.

Their remaining available movement will be modified by the grappling rules if they do not release the victim from the grapple.

Scenario 1

“The grappler has a speed of 60 feet. Standing up takes 30 feet. They stand, and only have 30 feet of movement left. Having someone grappled, they can only move 30 feet in any direction with the one they've grappled -- but they also have exactly 30 feet left. So they can move 30 feet in any direction with the one they grappled, so that being prone and grappling someone has no effect on you.”

No, intuitively not, because this would have them moving 30 feet forcing a grappled creature along with them, without suffering any movement penalty.

Let's look under the hood....

Grappler has speed of 60. He stands, using up half of his available movement. 30 feet remain.

Moving while grappling is covered by the Rule “speed is halved” (Chapter 9, page 77).

What do the Rules mean by “speed”? Which speed is halved, the 60 speed written on your Character Sheet or the 30 currently available to you?

Your speed as defined by the Rules is the distance in feet that the character or monster can walk in 1 round (Chapter 8, page 66). Or to paraphrase, the amount of movement available on your turn.

But we also know that the amount of movement available to you per turn (speed) changes during distinct phases because

However you’re moving, you deduct the distance of each part of your move from your speed until it is used up or until you are done moving. (Rules, Chapter 9, page 73, Movement and Position)

They realised that our speed might be modified differently, at different parts of our turn's movement.

After you have completed a "part of your movement" any subsequent part is distinct and separate and subject to whatever new conditions might be upon you. If part of your movement takes you through Difficult Terrain, only that part of your movement is penalised. If part of your movement takes you through the Area of Effect of Spirit Guardian, only that part of your movement is affected. If part of your movement has you penalised because you are standing from prone, only that part of your movement is penalised. And if part of your movement is used 'grapple-moving' only that part of your movement is penalised.

Putting it in another way, of your 60 feet of movement, you used half of it standing from prone. Were you moving while grappling as you did that? No, of course not. So the speed that is halved "when you are moving whilst grappling" excludes the first part of your movement which was not subject to that condition.

So, after you stand up from Prone, you deduct the distance of 30 feet from your movement, leaving you with available movement (60 minus 30) of 30. That part of your movement is completed and the appropriate amount has been deducted from your available movement.

Now the second part of your movement commences. Available movement (speed) is now 30; we halve it for the answer 15 and this is the distance in feet we can move a grappled creature in this scenario.

Scenario 2

“The grappler has a speed of 60 feet. Standing up takes 30 feet. They now have 30 feet left. Since they have someone else in a grapple, their speed is halved to 15 feet, and they can move with the grappled creature 15 feet.”

Yes, as above.

Scenario 3

“The grappler has a speed of 60 feet. Since they have someone in a grapple, they only have 30 feet of movement. Standing up requires 30 feet of movement. So when they stand up, they have no movement left.”

Absolutely not. They have a speed of 60, and it only costs them 30 feet to stand up. They have 30 feet remaining and it didn’t just evaporate simply because they are holding someone’s hand.

Unfortunately, this is the position put forth by the Accepted Answer. In addition to my analysis above, pointing to a different answer, I have shown at the end what I think is perhaps the flaw in that author's reasoning.

To finish off with your final question:

Scenario 4

“Also consider the case when the grappler has the Athletic feat, allowing them to stand up with only 5 feet of movement instead of half their total.”

This plays out as follows: Your speed is 60. Standing costs 5, leaving you with 55 feet remaining. Should you choose to move without releasing your grappled victim, you can move with them a further 27.5 feet. Rounded to 25 I suppose, if using the grid rules variant at Chapter 9, page 74.

Why the Accepted Answer is Incorrect

(with apologies and all due respect to @SevenSidedDie)

It assumes that you have 2 speeds, a normal speed of 60 and a "grappling speed" of 30. This is a fallacy. Half speed or "grappling speed" are not speeds, in the same way that walk speed 30 and flying speed 60 are speeds as indicated by the Rules at page 73 "Using Different Speeds". You are not "switching to grappling speed" in the same way that you might switch from walk speed to fly speed. So you cannot say "now that I am grappling my new speed is 30 and since I have moved 30 already I can no longer move".

• So what is your answer? Can a grappler stand up from prone? How far can (s)he move afterwards? Apr 15, 2020 at 10:55
• @enkryptor thanks for that feedback. I felt I had answered that by explaining that Scenario 2 is correct, but you made me realize a general answer to the question was missing. I have added an executive summary of my answer near the top. Apr 15, 2020 at 15:59
• This seems to be supported by this sage advice which seems to describe "moving at half speed" as using an extra 1ft to move each 1ft. This definition of "moving at half speed" is also used in the Roll20 compendium/D&D Beyond wikis, and it fits the plain english definition of speed much more logically than the accepted answer. +1 Apr 16, 2020 at 16:41
• You've equated movement with speed several times where it doesn't seem justified. Moving "at half speed" as with caltrops and "your speed is halved" don't seem equivalent either. You claim "If part of your movement takes you through the Area of Effect of Spirit Guardian, only that part of your movement is affected." where that's not specified anywhere in that spell. I would expect Spirit Guardians "affected creature's speed is halved" clause to half their speed. If an enemy used 15' of movement to enter Spirit Guardians AoE and their speed became 15' that would be their full move. Oct 26, 2021 at 16:47

Your second scenario is correct. Standing uses half of your movement, reducing you to 30'. Moving with the grappled creature is done at half speed, similar to moving through difficult terrain. You can move an additional 15' with your remaining 30' of movement.

• Would you mind to place marks where you justify your explanation on? Dec 5, 2017 at 18:18
• That math doesn't seem right. Are you confusing this: "Attempting to carry or drag a grappled opponent halves your total speed, not your remaining movement." ? Dec 5, 2017 at 18:24
• This is the correct answer to the question. See my comment against the accepted answer, which is in error. 'Your movement speed is halved' means the same thing as 'you move at half speed'. No other construction makes sense. Apr 13, 2020 at 16:32

I might be answering too late, but people are failing to consider one thing. Say you are grappling someone and are prone. You can crawl and move, but your speed is halved, so if you have 60 ft movement your speed is halved while you are dragging someone so you only have 30 ft to crawl while grappling someone. Then crawling costs 2ft of movement for each 1 ft moved, so you end up with 15 ft crawling.

How is this important? Well, I think this just shows that speed halving is done before any cost is applied. So in this case, you have 60 ft of movement, halved because you are grappling someone, so it is reduced to 30 ft. You want to stand up while dragging a person your grappled? That is half your current speed in cost so 15 ft cost right there. Now you only have 15 ft to move.

If you consider the term "speed is halved" as a way to change the basic speed variable for the creature, then it changes it before any costs to speed are accounted for. So if your creature has a fling speed of 60 and a walking speed of 30, if its speed is halved, then it would have a flying speed of 30 and a walking speed of 15 to which then you start applying all costs for movements and actions.

I am submitting this answer in order to provide a definitive answer to this question, in light of the submission by @Phil S.

This answer is functionally identical to the answer provided by @SevenSidedDie, which is marked as accepted.

Your grappler cannot move after standing up without ending the grapple.

When using the Athletic feat, 5 feet are deducted from your movement, and you can then move as usual under these conditions.

## Definitions

Firstly, some definitions to clear up a misconception that has taken hold of this thread.

Your Speed refers to the value on the character sheet:

Your Movement is not subject to a simple definition, but it is generally used to indicate the distance you can walk in your turn. (See: PHB, pg. 190, "Breaking Up Your Move")

Whenever you move, you subtract the distance travelled from your movement, keeping relevant modifiers in mind (such as difficult terrain).

## Step By Step

So, to use the example:

1. The grappler, when attempting to stand up invokes the relevant rules:

[...] Standing up takes more effort; doing so costs an amount of movement equal to half your speed.

(PHB, pg. 190 - 191, "Being Prone")

The grappler Does not invoke the rules for moving a grappled creature (yet), as the grappled creature is not being dragged or carried - it's not being moved at all.

This leaves our grappler with 60ft - 30ft = 30ft of movement

1. Now, the grappler wants to drag the creature and invokes the grappling rules:

[...] Moving a Grappled Creature. When you move, you can drag or carry the grappled creature with you, but your speed is halved, unless the creature is two or more sizes smaller than you.

(PHB, pg. 195, "Grappling")

Thus, the grapplers speed is halved, resulting in 60ft - 30ft = 30ft of speed, and we run into the following rule:

[...] On your turn, you can move a distance up to your speed.

(PHB, pg. 190, "Movement and Position")

Since the grapplers speed is 30ft when dragging a grappled creature, and 30ft of movement has already been expended, the grappler is unable to move while dragging the creature. But, they can still release the grapple and use the remaining 30ft of movement, as the grapplers walking speed is then not halved.

When using the Athletic feat, the grappler can drag the grappled creature another 25 feet. As it's speed at the time of dragging is 30ft, and 5ft was expended by standing up, 25 feet of movement are left to walk around with. If releasing grapple this would increase back to 55 feet.

# Implications

## Dashing

An interesting exception occurs when making use of the dash action.

The rules for dashing are as follows:

When you take the Dash action, you gain extra movement for the current turn. The increase equals your speed, after applying any modifiers. With a speed of 30 feet, for example, you can move up to 60 feet on your turn if you dash.

Any increase or decrease to your speed changes this additional movement by the same amount. If your speed of 30 feet is reduced to 15 feet, for instance, you can move up to 30 feet this turn if you dash.

(PHB, pg. 192, "Dash")

Curiously, (depending on your interpretation of the rules) this means that the grappler can use the dash action to gain 60 feet (as they are not (yet) invoking the grappling rule) of movement that is not affected by lowering your speed, as this added movement specifically allows you to ignore that threshold. (You would not be able to dash at all, otherwise)

However, the rules here provide enough language to imply that the movement gained from dashing is reduced by the grappling rule, as no timeframe is mentioned for "Any increase or decrease to your speed [...]" to take effect.

Thus we fall back to "The DM/GM has the final say". I recommend the second interpretation, as that is most likely RAI.

# Why Phil S. is wrong

Though the reasoning of @Phil S. is sound, (except for equating movement to speed) it's their sources that are wrong. As a sharp eyed reader may have noticed, Phil S. refers to "Rules", which is either a book that does not exist, a ruleset that is outdated or a ruleset for a different game. If the ruleset is the Basic Rules, Phil S. may have an outdated copy. According to wikipedia, these rules have been subject to errata and have subsequently been updated to match the Player's Handbook.

• It is important to note that PHB pg. 190 "Movement and Position" does include a contradictory line that I've opted to ignore in my answer: "However you're moving, you deduct the distance of each part of your move from your speed until it is used up or until you are done moving." The reason I've ignored it is because this would conflict with the rule mentioned just before, and when dashing, you would be able to dash less far the more you've moved before the dash. Jan 10 at 18:38