Pelvic organ prolapse is a common and costly women's health problem. Prevention of prolapse continues to play a role in the debate about the risks and benefits of elective cesarean section, making this an important topic for midwives to understand. While some women appear to be at higher risk for prolapse because of intrinsic anatomic and physiologic factors, others have modifiable risk factors that can be addressed by health care providers. This article discusses the current knowledge related to the etiology of prolapse and related components of pelvic anatomy. Biomechanical principles are then applied to enhance the understanding of prolapse development and prevention. Clinical recommendations are based on current evidence regarding topics such as physical activity during pregnancy, treatment of vaginal atrophy, and optimal pelvic floor muscle exercises.