Praise be to Allah.
The way in which women pray is the same as the way in which men pray in every part of the prayer, prostration, sitting, and so on. This is based on the following evidence:
1 – The Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Pray as you have seen me praying.” Narrated by al-Bukhaari. This is addressed to both men and woman.
Shaykh al-Albaani (may Allaah have mercy on him) said:
Everything that we have said above about the way in which the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) prayed applies equally to men and women. There is nothing narrated in the Sunnah which implies that women are exempted from any of that. Rather the general meaning of the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), “Pray as you have seen me praying,” include women too.
Sifat Salaat al-Nabi, p. 189
2 – The general meaning of the words of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): “Women are the twin halves of men.” Narrated by Abu Dawood, 204; al-Tirmidhi, 105, from the hadeeth of ‘Aa’ishah. Also narrated by al-Daarimi, 764, from the hadeeth of Anas.
Al-‘Ajlooni said: Ibn Qattaan said: The isnaad from ‘Aa’ishah is da’eef (weak), but the isnaad from Anas is saheeh (sound).
Kashf al-Khafa’, 1/248
Al-Khattaabi said: What we understand from this is: If something is said in the masculine, it is addressed to women too, except in cases where there is evidence to indicate that it applies only to women.
Some of the scholars said that a woman should not sit as a man sits (in prayer), and they quoted two da’eef (weak) hadeeths as evidence for that.
Two da’eef hadeeth were narrated concerning that, the like of which cannot be taken as evidence.
The first is the hadeeth of ‘Ata’ ibn al-‘Ajlaan from Abu Nadrah al-‘Abdi from Abu Sa’eed al-Khudri, the companion of the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) from the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), that he used to command the men to spread out their arms in their prostration and he used to tell the women to keep their arms close to their sides in their prostration. He used to tell the men to spread their left foot along the ground (and sit on it) and place the right foot upright during the tashahhud and he used to tell the women to sit, kneeling, on their heels.” Then al-Bayyhaqi said: This is a munkar hadeeth.
The other is the hadeeth of Abu Mutee’ al-Hakam ibn ‘Abd-Allaah al-Balkhi from ‘Umar ibn Dharr from Mujaahid from ‘Abd-Allaah ibn ‘Umar who said: The Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “When a woman sits during the prayer she should place one thigh against the other and when she prostrates she should press her stomach against her thighs, compressing herself in the most concealing manner, for Allaah looks at her and says: ‘O My angels, I call you to bear witness that I have forgiven her.’” Sunan al-Bayhaqi al-Kubra, 2/222.
This hadeeth is da’eef, because it was narrated by Abu Mutee’ al-Balkhi.
Ibn Hajar said:
Ibn Mu’een said: He is nothing. On one occasion he said: He is da’eef. Al-Bukhaari said: He is da’eef. Al-Nasaa’i said: He is da’eef. Lisaan al-Mizaan, 2/334.
Ibn ‘Adiyy said: It is clear that Abu Mutee’ is da’eef in his ahaadeeth and everything that he narrated, and for most of his narrations there are no corroborating reports.
Al-Kaamil fi Du’afa’ al-Rijaal, 2/214
A third hadeeth was narrated from Yazeed ibn Abi Habeeb, saying that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) passed by two women who were praying. He said: “When you prostrate, press some of your flesh to the ground, for women are not like men in that.”
This was narrated by Abu Dawood in al-Maraaseel (p. 118) and by al-Bayhaqi (2/223).
This hadeeth is mursal, which is a category of da’eef (weak).
In al-Musannaf (1/242), Ibn Abi Shaybah narrated some reports from some of the salaf which suggest that there is a difference in the way women and men sit (in prayer), but the only evidence that counts is the words of Allaah and His Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him). Then he narrated from some of the salaf that the way in which men and women pray is the same.
Al-Bukhaari (may Allaah have mercy on him) said: Umm al-Darda’ used to sit in prayer as a man sits and she was a scholarly woman.
Al-Haafiz stated in Fath al-Baari that Abu’l-Darda’ had two wives, both of whom were called Umm al-Darda’. The older one was a Sahaabiyyah and the younger one was a Taabi’iyyah. He suggested that the one who was referred to here by al-Bukhaari was the younger one.
See also the answer to question no. 38162.
And Allaah knows best.