Shoving 5e – (Shove Action 5e DnD) (Complete Guide!)

Shoving 5e

Looking for Shoving 5e, so you are at the right spot. Here in this post, you will get the complete guide on Shove Action in DnD 5E.

Shove is an amazing in-game ability that can be performed by all characters in Dungeons & Dragons. Shove’s use is highly situational, but, under the right conditions, it can be very powerful.

For any in-game melee character with great strength, Shove is a crucial part of their toolkit. Now without any delay let’s start the Shoving 5e guide.

Shoving 5e Work

Shoving 5e
Shoving 5e

Shoving 5e does 2 distinct things. It can either be used to knock an in-game target prone or to push a target away in the game.

Whenever you use the attack action on your move then you can use one of your actions to Shove a creature that is only one size larger than you. Shoving is actually a melee attack that does no damage in the game.

If your Shove is successful is actually determined by a contested check. You roll Strength (Athletics) and your in-game target rolls their selection of Dexterity (Acrobatics) or Strength (Athletics).

Whenever there are contested checks, a draw keeps the status quo (e.g. the in-game target not being shoved) so your roll needs to be higher than the target’s roll for the Shove to be effective.

If your Shove is actually successful then you can decide to either knock the target prone or push the target away by 5ft in the game.

Shoving 5e Restrictions and Edge Cases

Here are the details of restrictions and edge cases for Shove

Direction Of Shove

There are different situations where you need to push a target 5ft in a particular direction and you could be wondering if you can Shove a creature to the right or left.

Shove always pushes the in-game target directly away actually from you. Some DMs might enable you to shove a target sideways but this is not actually allowed by the rules for Shove in the Player’s Handbook.

However, you may sometimes be able to maneuver around an opponent to get a better angle for Shove in the game.

Shove And Attacks Of Opportunity

There are two main questions that gamers frequently have relating to Shove and opportunity attacks.

Q. Can I Shove As An Opportunity Attack In DnD?

The answer is no, All special attacks like Grapple, Shove, etc. can only be performed when you use the Attack action on your in-game turn.

Some DMs may use a house rule that you can actually make these in-game attacks as an opportunity attack but if you are playing strictly by the published rules then this is not actually allowed in the game.

Q. Does A Shoved Creature Provoke Opportunity Attacks In DnD?

The answer is no, you do not provoke opportunity attacks if you are actually moved by someone or something else without using your action, movement, or reaction in the game.

Shoving Allies

There are different situations where you might need to shove an allied creature. A frequent question, in these cases, is whether your ally can decide to automatically fail the contested check and enable you to shove them.

There is nothing in the rules which actually allows you to decide to fail a contested check and, based purely on the current rules, this is not actually allowed. However, this is a case where many DMs might allow you to instantly fail the check in the game.

If not then you can decide to make the check with your weaker skill in the game, out of Dexterity (Acrobatics) or Strength (Athletics), so the shove is more likely to be successful in the game.

Shove And Reach Weapons

Shove does need a free hand as Grapple does, so some gamers might view it as an attack made with their in-game weapon. Therefore, does it not make sense to follow that Reach weapons like pikes and lances would allow you to actually Shove from further away?

Here, the answer is also no, While it is not explicit in the published rules, 5E’s lead designer has actually stated that the Shove action does not use your weapon and thus reach weapons cannot extend their range in the game.

When Should Use Shove In Dnd?

Here are the details of when should use Shove

Environmental Hazards

The most common use for shove is when a battle zone has environmental hazards in the game. No matter if you are battling by the train track edge, a volcano, or a portal to the Elemental Plane of Fire, 5ft can sometimes be the difference between a 100hp opponent and no opponent at all.

In such cases, why not offer them a shove? You do not have to slog through 60hp of an ogre’s health when you can easily push it off a cliff in the game.

Gain Advantage On Melee Attacks

If your in-game party is very melee-heavy then shoving opponents prone may be the best way to gain an advantage on those attacks. Ranged attacks have a disadvantage when dealing with prone targets, however, so this is much less helpful if your party contains ranged characters in the game.

Once you have shoved an opponent prone, you can then grapple with them to prevent them from again standing up. Standing up from prone takes half of a creature’s movement on its in-game turn and grappling a creature keeps it from moving in the game.

Shoving Allies

There are several situations where you may need to Shove an ally in the game. Particularly, Shove can be a good way to push a more fragile ally out of opponents’ melee ranges without provoking opportunity attacks.

In particular, if you are directly behind them in the initiative order in the game, this can actually allow them to leave melee range without having to disengage.

Best Classes Use Of Shove

Shove is most useful to in-game characters who operate in melee, have a high-strength stat, and can make many attacks in a single move.

These in-game characters are more likely to be in a position to Shove, they are most likely to be successful in Shoving, and they are able to deal in-game damage in the same turn that they Shove in the game.


Strength-based fighters can have good use of Shove. The fighters uniquely benefit from a third (and eventually a 4th) attack each turn in the game. This makes them better at using special melee attacks because they sacrifice less of their in-game damage for them.


Shove is very helpful for barbarians. Barbarians can only make 2 attacks per turn but they have unparalleled survivability which actually gives them a good choice for control-focused characters in the game.

Also, their Rage provides them an advantage on strength checks, which increases the Shove attack’s likelihood to succeed in the game.

Alternatives To Shoving 5e

Shoving 5e
Shoving 5e

There are 2 Battle Master maneuvers that are upgraded forms of the 2 parts of Shove. These are actually available to Battle Master fighters in the game, but other fighters also can access them with the Superior Technique combat style from Tasha’s Cauldron of Everything.

Pushing Attack

Pushing Attack actually allows you, upon making an effective weapon attack, to use the superiority die. The superiority die is added to your in-game attack’s damage and a target that is smaller or Large must succeed on a Strength saving throw based on your Maneuver save DC. If the in-game target fails their save, they are pushed away by up to 15ft in the game.

It is much stronger than the Shove. Where Shove eliminates an attack when you could have dealt damage, the Pushing Attack deals more in-game damage than a successful weapon attack.

Also, Pushing Attack can be used by Small creatures to deal with Large creatures, whereas Shove can only be actually used against Large creatures if your in-game character is Medium.

The ability to push an in-game target 15ft is also very effective and makes Pushing Attack much less niche than Shove. Also, Pushing Attack is a weapon attack, which indicates that it benefits from increased range from Reach weapons in the game.

Pushing Attack forces a raw strength saving action , rather than offering the target a choice between acrobatics (dexterity) and athletics (strength). This is effective against targets with low strength and high dexterity.

It can also work well against high-strength in-game targets because athletics proficiency no longer applies to the check in the game.

Trip Attack

Trip Attack can be used when you perform a successful weapon attack and also specifies that you expend a superiority die, which is applied to the in-game damage of your attack. A target that is smaller or Large has to succeed on a strength save from your Maneuver save DC or be knocked prone in the game.

This is effective for many of the same reasons as the in-game Pushing Attack. You increase damage by using it instead of sacrificing damage to actually use it. This can be applied by Small creatures against Large creatures, as well as it can benefit from the range of Reach in-game weapons.


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