The Short Rest feature is a relatively new addition to D&D, introduced in 4e. A Short Rest allows you to replenish your health, regain some class features, and calm down after some action. Back in 4e, Short Rests were 5 minutes long. Let’s… Let’s just say that changed a little bit in this edition. Time to dive into our How Long is a Short Rest in 5E Guide.
How Long is a Short Rest in 5e?
In 5e, the Short Rest is – at minimum – one hour. After 1 hour of rest, you can spend hit dice to heal, and a Bard can increase the amount you heal by d6. Short rests can be interrupted, meaning you’re back to trying to spend a full hour to restore HP. Make sure you’re in a safe place when you do so!
Short rests aren’t limited by anything… other than the fact that you only have 16 waking hours per day if you don’t want to be exhausted!
Class Abilities Affected By Short Rests
Warlocks are the most popular classes for Short Rests. They have extremely limited spell slots; only up to 4 at level 5. However, they replenish all of their spell slots after a full, short rest.
Two classes can recover spells during short rests. The Druid’s Circle of the Land is the casting druid, and thus at level 2 they can replenish spell slots equal to half their total level. That’ll keep you casting in most situations. The Wizard has this ability no matter what! Either way, this is only available once per day, but scales well with your short rest.
At level 2, Bards learn the Song of Rest, which allows you to increase the hit dice healing by another dice. This ability is limited only by how often your party takes a short rest – which probably isn’t gonna be too often, since it takes an hour!
Then there’s the classes that regain resources other than health or magic! Monks have an interesting requirement for regaining ki; 30 minutes of meditation. Then, they regain all expended ki. Make sure you spend your Ki like crazy, especially if your casting friends want to take a short rest soon!
Wild Shape uses recover after a full, short rest, as does Channel Divinity.
At level 20, Sorcerers actually gain 4 sorcery points after every short rest. That’s great, since it empowers both your spell slots and metamagical ability. However, so few campaigns get to level 20.
In addition to all of these, there’s loads of subclasses that refresh their abilities post-short rest. Fighter especially have a bunch of subclasses (as well as Action Surge/Second Wind) that recover after a short rest.
Do remember that anything that recovers after a short rest usually recovers after a long rest. Talk to your GM if they don’t specify short or long, but… try not to spend 9 hours in a row resting.
That answers the question “How Long is a Short Rest in 5E?” 1 hour of rest is a little long. Usually, it means the party has to leave a dungeon entirely if they want to regain spells or ki or whatever. Your GM is the final arbiter of whether or not you’ve rested long enough to replenish health or class abilities. You’d be surprised how often a question like that could lead to a shorter amount of time resting, but maybe with another limitation.
Want more D&D Guides? Check out our rundown on how long a turn is!