What is the ruling and method of raising the hands for the opening takbir?
In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate
The ruling of Raising the Hands
Raising the hands in the opening takbir is an emphasized sunna of the prayer.
The Method of Raising
The chosen opinion in the Hanafi school is that one should raise their hands first, then when one is in position (explained below), one makes the takbir while lowering them. Immediately after lowering the hands, one will tie their hands. [Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah]
The other method you mentioned is also valid in the Hanafi school, even though the above is relied upon and chosen.
Position of Raising the Hands
It is sunna for men to raise their hands such that they are parallel to their earlobes. The palms of the hands should be facing the Qibla and the fingers relaxed in a normal position. [Ibid.]
Thereafter they will tie their hands below the navel right hand over the left.
For the female, she will raise her hands till parallel to her shoulders such that her fingertips line up with the tops of the shoulders. Likewise, her hands will face the Qibla and her fingers in a relaxed position. [Ibid.]
Thereafter, they will place their hands on their chest, right hand over the left.
Hope this helps
Allah knows best
[Shaykh] Yusuf Weltch
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani
Shaykh Yusuf Weltch is a teacher of Arabic, Islamic law, and spirituality. After accepting Islam in 2008, he then completed four years at the Darul Uloom seminary in New York, where he studied Arabic and the traditional sciences. He then traveled to Tarim, Yemen, where he stayed for three years studying in Dar Al-Mustafa under some of the greatest scholars of our time, including Habib Umar Bin Hafiz, Habib Kadhim al-Saqqaf, and Shaykh Umar al-Khatib. In Tarim, Shaykh Yusuf completed the memorization of the Qur’an and studied beliefs, legal methodology, hadith methodology, Qur’anic exegesis, Islamic history, and several texts on spirituality. He joined the SeekersGuidance faculty in the summer of 2019.