Young people do less sport than previously thought, according to a Nike study. Commissioned by Nike Asia-Pacific, the report revealed that Hong Kong and Korean children, who participated in the study, only play sports an average of two to three times per week, compared to an average of five times a week among children in the United States. Nike has launched a regional advertising campaign designed to encourage Asia's youth to play more sports, and encourage parents to view it as a positive thing. Other studies also showed that the number of Asian children aged seven to 18 engaging in physical activity was declining, and the number of obese children was increasing. A related report on the role of sports among Asian teenagers highlighted why activity was essential to developing mental health and self-esteem. 'We found that the majority of those surveyed believe sports are activities where values such as teamwork, determination, perseverance and strength are learned,' said a spokeswoman for Nike Asia. Self-esteem, for example, ran higher in women who played sports, she said. Other research shows that girls who participate in athletics are 92 per cent less prone to get involved with drugs and three times likelier to graduate from college than those who do not.