I know most of you have been taught your department's handcuffing protocol, but let me describe one simple system that works the same way whether your subject is standing, kneeling, or prone.
Keep the chain in the middle of your hand with a forceful grip to keep the chain straight. This grip is maintained until the cuffs are double locked on your subject. The double strand is facing up, and the cuffs are held in the same hand as the one on your subject that you are about to cuff. (If you are cuffing the subject's right hand, you are holding the cuffs in your right hand.) Have your subject face away from you, arms extended behind him, palms up, hands off of his back. Move to a 45 degree position of advantage, gun side back. Order him to look away from you, and then tactically move toward him. Obtain a modified wrist twist, ensuring that you do not grab that handcuff channel that God created for us. Apply some tension with that wrist twist, but not too much. We don't want to have a compliant subject become non-compliant. The point is to be firm and authoritative whenever you place your hands on any subject. As soon as you touch anyone, they will know whether you are in control or not.
Now place that single strand firmly on the handcuff channel on the wrist and force the cuff downward. It should be forceful enough so that the teeth on the single strand automatically feed into the pawl. If necessary, you may use your index finger to assist with closing the single strand. On the remaining hand, make a three finger grab (this is the same as the grip on a handshake), bend the wrist outward to avoid skin folds getting caught by the single strand. Next repeat the same procedure as you did with the first cuff that you placed on. Double lock!
As I mentioned earlier, this method works in the same manner for kneeling subjects, or those that you prone out. If using the prone position, I recommend approaching on a 45 degree angle from the front rather than from behind. This eliminates being kicked or taken down with a leg sweep by those that have had martial arts training. The beauty of this handcuffing system is that it is simple and never changes: if you are cuffing the subject's right hand, the cuffs are in your right hand, and vice-versa.
One other item that I would like to address about cuffing is this: once the cuffs are on a subject, I have seen officers escorting them to or from their police vehicle by holding them at the upper arm. If you want to control a prisoner, I recommend that you utilize the same grip on the chain that you used to apply the cuffs. If you subject gets frisky or attempts to bolt, you quickly and forcefully drive that chain straight down to the ground. Believe me, that subject will be on the ground in a heartbeat!
Last word of caution--be just as tactical when removing the handcuffs as you were when you applied them. We never know what goes on in the minds of those whose freedom we have taken away. Their anger may have built up on the ride to the station, or you may have said something that didn't sit well with them. Regardless, be tactically sound when removing the cuffs; never give the bad guys an advantage. Stay safe, brothers and sisters!